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at |http: //books .google .com/I 

JAN 18 1899 

Sarbarli GTollrgf iibrarg 






VOL. n. 







ED EDERSHETM, M.A.Oxon., D.D., Ph.D. 


" aifT^ KurotKii way to irXtipiMt^ii ttjs Ocoriyroc cui/iartuuif 





.ill r I'/'i f <> ; ^ .<"••(• / 

JAK 191884 




BOOK in. — continued, 






The Cavils of the Pharisees concerning Purification, and the Teacliing of the 
Lord concerning Purity — ^The Traditions concerning * Hand-washing * and 
•Vows' ......... 3 


The Great Crisis in Popular Feeling — The Last Discourses in the Synagogue 
of Capernaum — Christ the Bread of Life — * Will ye also go away ? ' .25 

Jesus and the Syro-Phcenician Woman . . . .37 

A Group of Miracles among a Semi-Heathen Population . . .44 


The Two Sa1)batli Controversies — Tlie Plucking of the ICars of Com by the 
Disciplfs, and the IIealin<jr of the Man with the With^rod Hand . 51 




The Feeding of the Four Thousand — To Dalmanutha — 'The Sign from 
HeaTen' — Journey to Csdsarea Philippi — Wllat is the Leaven of the 
Pharisees and Sadducees ? . . . . . .63 


The Great Confession — The Great Commission — The Great Instruction — The 
Great Temptation— The Great Decision . . . .72 




The Transfiguratbn . . . . . .91 

On the Morrow of the Transfiguration ...... 102 


The Last Events in Galilee— The Trihute-Money, the Dispute by the Way, 
the Forbidding of him who could not follow with the Disciples, and the 
Consequent Teaching of Christ . . . . .110 


The Journey to Jerusalem — Chronological Arrangement of the Last Part of 
the Gospel Narratives — First Incidents by the Way . . .126 


Further Incidents of the Journey to Jerusalem — The Mission and Return of 
the Seventy — The Home at Bethany — Martha and Mary . , .1 85 





At the Feast of Tabernacles—Firat Diacourae in the Temple . .148 

' In the Last, the Great Day of the Feast ' . . . .156 

Teaching in the Temple on the Octave of the Feast of Tabernaclen . .104 

The Healing of the Man born Blind . . , .177 


The * Good Shepherd ' and His * One Flock * — Last Discourse at the Feast of 
Tabernacles ......... 188 


The First Persean Discourses — To the Pharisees concerning the Two King- 
doms — Their Contest — What qualifies a Disciple for that of God, and 
how Israel was becoming Subject io that of Evil . . .195 


The Morning Meal in the Pharisee's House — Meals and Fe&sts among the 
Jews — Christ's Last Persean Warning to Pharisaism . . . 204 

To the DLyciplee — Two Events and their Morals . . • . 214 

At the Feast of the Dedication of the Temple ..... 220 


The Second Series of Parables — The Two Parables of him who is Neighbour 
to us : The First, concerning the Love that, Unasked, gives in our Need ; 
The Second, concerning the Love which is elicited by our asking in our 
Need. ......... 233 




The Three Parables of Warning : To the Individual, to the Nation, and to the 
Theocracy— The Foolish Rich Man—The Barren Fig^Tree— The Great 
Supper ......... 243 


The Tbree Parables of the Gospel : Of the Recovery of the Lost— Of the 
Lost Sheep, the Lost Drachm, the Lost Son .... 26& 


The Unjust Steward — Dives and Lazarus — Jewish Agricultural Notes — Pricea 
of Produce — Writing and Legal Documents — Purple and Fine Linen — 
Jewish Notions of Hades ....... 264 


The Three Last Parables of the Peraean Series : The Unrighteous Judge — 
The Self-Righteous Pharisee and the Publican — The Unmerciful Servant . 284 

Christ's Discourses in Persea — Close of the Pernan Ministry . . • 298 


The Death and the Raising of Lazarus— The Question of Miracles and of this 
Miracle of Miracles — Views of Negative Criticism on this History — Jewish 
Burying-Rites and Sepulchres ...... 308 


On the Journey to Jerusalem — Departure from Ephraim by Way of Samaria 
and Galilee — Healing of Ten Lepers — Prophetic Discourse of the Coming 
Kingdom — On Divorce: Jewish Views of it — The Blessing to Little 
Children ......... 327 


The Last Incidents in Peraea — The Young Ruler who went away Sorrowful 
— To Leave All for Christ — Prophecy of His Passion — The Request of 
Salome, and of James and John ...... 333 




In Jericho and at Bethany — Jericho — A Guest with Zaccheeus — ^The Healing 
of Blind Bartim»u8— The Plot at Jerusalem — ^At Bethany, and in the 
House of Simon the Leper ....... 849 




The First Day in Passion- Week — Palm Sunday — ^The Royal Entry into Jeru- 
salem ......... 363 


The Second Day in Passion-Week — The Barren Fig-Tree — The Cleansing of 
the Temple — The Hosanna of the Children .... 374 


The Tliird Day in Passion-Week—The Events of that Day— The Question of 
Christ's Authority — The Question of Tribute to Caesar — The Widow's 
Farthing — The Greeks who Sought to See Jesus — Summary and Retro- 
spect of the Public Ministry of Christ ..... 380 


The Third Day in Passion- Week — The Last Controversies and Discourses — 
The Sadducees and the Resurrection — ^The Scribe and the Great Com- 
mandment — Question to the Pharisees about David's Son and Lord — 
Final Warning to the People : The Eight * Woes '—Farewell . . 396 


The Third Day in Passion- Week — Tlie Last Series of Parables : To the 
Pharisees and to the People — On the Way to Jerusalem : The Parable of 
the Labourers in the Vineyard — In the Temple: The Parable of the 'No* 
and * Yes ' of the Two Sons — ^Tlie Parable of the Evil Husbandmen Evilly 
Destroyed — The Parable of the Marriage of tlie King's Son and of the 
Wedding Garment ........ 416 


The Evening of the Third Day in Passion- Week — On the Mount of Olives : 
Discourse to the Disciples concerning the Last Things . . . 431 

VOL. u. a 





Eyening of the Third Day in Passion- Week — On the Mount of Olives — Last 
Parables : To the Disciples concerning the Last Things — The Parable of 
the Ten Virgins — The Parable of the Talents — Supplementary Parable of 
the Minas and the King's Reckoning with His Servants and His Rebellious 
Citizens ......... 453 


The Fourth Day in Passion Week — Jesus in His Last Sabbatic Rest before 
His Agony, and the Sanhedrists in their Unrest — ^The Betrayal — Judas : 
His Character, Apostasy, and End ...... 468 

The Fifth Day in Passion- Week— ' Make Ready the Passover ! ' . . 479- 

The Paschal Supper — The Institution of the Lord's Supper . . 490 

The Last Discourse of Christ — ^The Prayer of Consecration . ,612 

Oethsemane ......... 5«32 

Thursday Mght — Before Annas and Caiaphas — Peter and Jesus . . 545 

The Morning of Good Friday ....... 564 

' Crucified, Dead, and Buried ' . . . . . . 580 

On the Resurrection of Christ from the Dead ..... 619' 

On the Third Day He rose again from the Dead ; He ascended into Heaven ' 628 



Pseudepignphic Writings ..... 

Philo of AlezaitdriA and Balibiiiic Theologj 

'fulness of Images, Pi 


Kabbinic Theologj and Literature . . . I: 


Liat of the ^laccabees, of the Family of Herod, of the Iligh-PrieBtc, the 
Roman Procurators of Judeea, and Roman Governors of Sjrin . , (j 

On the Date of the Nativity of our Lord ,7 

Rabbinical Traditions about Elijah, the Forerunner of the Messiah . 7 


List of Old Testament PaMagea MeSBiftDioaUy Applied in Ancient Rabbiiiic 
Writings .7 

On the Supposed Temple-Synag<^ue . . . .7 




On the Prophecy, Is. 2d. 3 . . . . 741 

On the Baptism of Proselytes ....... 742 

Jewbh Angelology and Demonology — The Fall of the Angels . 745 

The Law in Messianic Times ....... 761 

The Location of Sychar, and the Date of Our Lord's Visit to Samaria . 764 


On the Jewish Views ahout ' Demons ' and the ' Demonised/ together with 
some Notes on the Intercourse between Jews and Jewish Christians in the 
First Centuries ........ 767 


The Ordinances and Law of the Sabhath as laid down in the Mishnah and the 
Jerusalem Talmud ........ 774 

Haggadah about Simeon Chepha (Legend of Simon Peter) . . . 785 

On Eternal Punishment, according to the Habbis and the New Testament . 788 

INDEX I. OP Subjects ....... 795 

INDEX II. OP Passaobs fbom the Foub Gospels repekrbd to is thbss 
Volumes ......... 811 

Book III. 




VOL. n. 



' H4ND-WASH1S0 ' AND ' TOWB.' 

(St. Uatt. zv. 1-20 1 St. Mark Til. 1-23.) 

As we follow the narrative, confirmatory evidence of what had pre- CBAP. 
ceded springs up at almost every step. It is quite in accordance xxxi 
with the abrupt departure of Jesus from Capernaum, and its motives, ' ' ' 
that wheo, so far from finding rest and privacy at Bethsaida (east of 
t he Jordan), a greater multitude than ever had there gathered around 
Him, which would fain have proclaimed Him King, He resolved 
on immediate return to the western shore, with the view of seek- 
ing a quieter retreat, even though it were in *the coasts of Tyre 
and Ridon.'' According to St. Mark,'* the Master had directed the 'blmm*. 
disciples to make for the other Bethsaida, or 'Fisherton,' on the tst.M«k 
western shore of the Lake." Remembering how common the corre- '*'*' 
sponding name is in our own country,' and that fishing was the main ^u- >i 
industry along the shores of the Lake, we need not wonder at the 
existence of more than one Beth-Saida, or 'Fisherton.'' Nor yet 
does it seem strange, that the site should be lost of what, probably, 
except for the fishing, was quite an unimportant place. By the testi- 
monv both of Josephus and the Rabbis, the shores of Gennesaret 
were thickly studded with little towns, villages, and hamlets, which 
have all perished without learing a trace, while even of the largest 
the mins are few and inconsiderable. We would, however, hazard a 
geographical conjecture. From the fact that St. Mark* names 'stiurk 
Bethsaida, and St. John" Capernaum, as the original destination .stjoim 
of the boat, we would infer that Bethsaida was the fishing quarter ''■"■ 

■ I bAFe myself counted twelve differ- bnt complete. 

eot places io England bearing names ' Id Jer. Uc^U. (p. 70 a, line IG from 

which might befreelyrendered by' Beth- bottom) we read of a nJlT'Si but the 

(lajda,* DOt to tpeak at the many saborbs locality scarcely agrees with onr Betb- 

and qa&rt«rB whicb bear a like designa- Raids. 
uoD, and, of coone, nij list U anything 


BOOK of» or rather close to, Capernaum, even as ve bo often find 
in own country a 'Fisherton' adjacent to larger towns. Wii 
' would agree the circumstance, that no traces of an ancient 1 

|| lijive been discovered at Tell Hum, the site of Cai>emauni.' F 

|i • Pt Jnhn I. it would explain, how Peter and Andrew, who, according to St. 

*«.Miirki. w*^"^ of Bethsaida, are described by St. Mark*" as having tbeii 
*• in Capernaum. It also deserves notice, tliat, as regards the 

of St. Peter, St. Mark, who was so intimately connected wit 
names Capernaum, while St. John, who was his fellow-tow 
names Bethaaida, and that the reverse difierence obtains b 
the two Evangelists in regard to the direction of the ship, 
also suggests, that in a sense — as regarded the fishermen — the 
were interchangeable, or rather, that Bethsaida was the *Fisl 
of Ciipemaum.* 

A superficial reader might object tliat, in the circums 

we would scarcely liave ex2>ected Christ and His disciples ti 

returned at once to the immediate neighbourhood of Caperat 

not to that city itself. But a fuller knowledge of the circumt 

will not only, as so often, convert the supposed difficulty int* 

important confirmatory evidence, but supply some deeply intei 

details. The apparently trivial notice, that (at least) the cone 

part of the Discourses, immediately on the return to Cajwi 

« St John was Spoken by Christ ' in Synagogue,' ' ' enables us not only to l 

' this address, but to fix the eiact succession of events. ] 

Discourse was siwken ' in Synagogue,' it must have been (as i 

nhown) on the Jewish Sabbath. Iteekoning backwards, we an 

the conclusion, that Jesus with His disciples left Capernaum for 

saida-Julias on a Thursday ; that the miraculous feeding of th< 

titude took place on Thursday evening ; the passage of the dii 

to the other side, and the walking of Christ on the sea, as n 

the failure of Peter'^ faith, in the night of Thursday to I'>idaj 

* SL John jiassage of the people to Capernaum in search of Jesus,* with al 

*'■ '* followed, on the Friday ; and, lastly, the final Discourses of 

on the Saturday in Cajiemaum and in the Synagogue. 

Two inferences will appear from this chronological arrangf 
First, when our Ijord had retraced His steiB from the eastern 
in search of rest and retirement, it was so close on the Jewish Si 
(Friday), that He was almost obliged to return to Gaperna 

■ Comp. /fiu'dclor (Sacin) FuliUt. p:igc wliicli bad been the soeno of m i 

2:0. Hi" miglily works (St. Mtitt. xi. 

' Slay tliis coDiiection of Cnpernaum l^nkc x. 13)7 

nnd lleth-Saiila account for tlio nivn- ■ llicrc in no artfole in the oii( 
tion of tbo latter us one of (he places 


spend the holy day there, before undertaking the farther journey to chap. 
Hhe coasts of Tyre and Sidon.' And on the Sabbath no actual xxxi 
danger, either firom Herod Antipas or the Pharisees, need have been 
apprehended. Thus (as before indicated), the sudden return to 
Capernaum, so far from constituting a difficulty, serves as confirma- 
tion of the previous narrative. Again, we cannot but perceive a 
pecoliar correspondence of dates. Mark here: The miraculous 
breaking of bread at Bethsaida on a Thursday evening, and the 
breaking of Bread at the Last Supper on a Thursday evening ; the 
attempt to proclaim Him King, and the betrayal ; Peter's bold as- 
•ertion, and the failure of his faith, each in the night from Thursday 
to Friday ; and, lastly, Christ's walking on the angry, storm-tossed 
iraves, and conmianding them, and bringing the boat that bore His 
disciples safe to land, and His \actory and triumph over Death and 
him that had the power of Death. 

These, surely, are more than coincidences ; and in this respect 
also may this history be regarded as symbolic. As we read it, Christ 
directed the disciples to steer for Bethsaida, the * Fisherton ' of Caper- 
naum. But, apart from the latter suggestion, we gather from the 
expressions used,' that the boat which bore the disciples had drifted ^f 53^^*^ 
out of its course — ^probably owing to the wind — and touched land, 
iwt where they had intended, but at Gennesaret, where they moored 
it There can be no question, that by this term is meant * the plain 
of Gennesaret,' the richness and beauty of which Josephus ^ and t^?®^^ 
tlie Babbis ^ describe in such glowing language. To this day it bears 7, s 
inarks of having been the most favoured spot in this favoured region. IfeT^a! 
Tavelling northwards from Tiberias along the Lake, we follow, for ^'* ^ ^ 
about five or six miles, a narrow ledge of land, shut in by mountains, 
when we reach the home of the Magdalene, the ancient Magdala 
(the modem Medjdd). Eight over against us, on the other side, is 
itrsa (Gerasa), the scene of the great miracle. On leaving Magdala 
4e mountains recede, and form an amphitheatric plain, more than a 
'Dile wide, and four or five miles long. This is * the land of Gennesaret * 
(d Ohwweir). We pass across the * Valley of Doves,' which intersects 
it about one mile to the north of Magdala, and pursue our journey 
over the well-watered plain, till, after somewhat more than an hour, 
re reach its northern boundary, a little beyond Khan Minieh, The 
latter has, in accordance with tradition, been regarded by some as 
representing Bethsaida,' but seems both too far from the Lake, and 
00 much south of Capernaum, to answer the requirements. 

• Baedfker {Soein) has grouped together the reasons against identifying Khan 
}iinieh with Capemaom itself. 


BOOK No sooner had the well-known boat, which bore Jesus and TVs 

ni disciples, been run up the gravel-beach in the early morning of that 
Friday, than His Presence must have become known throughout the 
district, all the more that the boatmen would soon spread the story 
of the miraculous occurrences of the preceding evening and night 
With Eastern rapidity the tidings would pass along, and from all tbft 
country around the sick were brought on their pallets, if they might 
but touch the border of His garment. Nor could such touch, even- 
though the outcome of an imperfect faith, be in vain — for He, WhoB^ 
garment they sought leave to touch, was the Grod-Man, the Conqueror 
of Death, the Source and Spring of all life. And so it was wher» 
•St Matt. He landed, and all the way up to Bethsaida and Capernaum.* ^ 
sJiuatL In what followed, we can still trace the succession of events^ 

though there are considerable difficulties as to their precise order., 
^st John Thus we are expressly told,^ that those from * the other side ' * earner 
to Capernaum ' on * the day following ' the miraculous feeding, and- 
that one of the subsequent Discourses, of which the outline is preserved^ 

• m. 99 was delivered * in Synagc^e.' ^ As this could only have been don^ 
«st. joim either on a Sabbath or Feast-Day (in this instance, the Passover ^)^ 

it follows, that in any case a day must have intervened between theiiC 
arrival at Capernaum and the Discourse in Synagogue. Again, it i^ 
almost impossible to believe that it could have been on the Piwsover-— ' 
day (15th Nisan).* For we cannot imagine, that any large numbe^^ 
would have left their homes and festive preparations on the Eve 
the Pascha (14th Nisan), not to speak of the circumstance that 
Galilee, differently from Judsea, all laboiur, including, of course, ihat> 
of a journey across the Lake, was intermitted on the Eve of th^ 

• Tm.Ua Passover.^ Similarly, it is almost impossible to believe, that so man^ 

festive pilgrims would have been assembled till late in the evening 
preceding the 14th Nisan so Ceur from Jerusalem as Bethsaida-Julias^ 
since it would have been impossible after that to reach the city and- 
Temple in time for the feast. It, therefore, only remains to regard 
the Synagogue-service at which Christ preached as that of ai^- 
ordinary Sabbath, and the arrival of the multitude as having takei9- 
place on the Friday in the forenoon. 

Again, from the place which the narrative occupies in the Gospd^^ 
of St. Matthew and St. Mark, as well as from certain internal 

■ Hr. Bramn MeCleUan (N. T. voL i. more than one occasion on which 

p. 670), holdti, that both the Passover and same thing happened. 

Pentecost had interrened— I know not • This is propounded in TTttff^&r, Chio^-^ 

on what grounds. At the same time the nolog. Sjnopse, pp. 276, 290, as a possible^ 

Jangnage in St. Hark vi. 56, might imply view. 



jvddence, it seems difficult to doubt, that the reproof of the Pharisees chap. 
and. Scribes on the subject of *the unwashed hands,'* was not xxxi 
administered immediately after the miraculous feeding: and the >st.Matt. 

XV. 1 • St. 

night of miracles. We cannot, however, feel equally sure, which of Mark Vu. i 
the two preceded the other: the Discourse in Capernaum,^ or the »»8tJohn 
Reproof of the Pharisees.*' Several reasons have determined us to . st Matt. 
T^;ard the Reproof as having preceded the Discourse. Without ^•^*^- 
entering on a detailed discussion, the simple reading of the two 
sections will lead to the instinctive conclusion, that such a Discourse 
could not have been followed by such cavil and such Reproof, while 
it seems in the right order of things, that the Reproof which led 
to the * ofifence ' of the Pharisees, and apparently the withdrawal of 
some in the outer circle of discipleship,'* should have been followed « st. Matt, 
by the positive teaching of the Discourse, which in turn resulted 
in the going back of many who had been in the inner circle of 

disciples.* • st. John 

*^ vl. 60-66 

In these circumstances, we venture to suggest the following as the 
snoceasion of events. Early on the Friday morning the boat which 
hore Jesus and His disciples grated on the sandy beach of the plain 
of (xennesaret. As the tidings spread of His arrival and of the miracles 
which had so lately been witnessed, the people from the neighbouring 
tillages and towns flocked around Him, and brought their sick for 
the healing touch. So the greater part of the forenoon passed. 
Meantime, while they moved, as the concourse of the people by the 
way would allow, the first tidings of all this must have reached the 
neighbouring Capernaum. This brought immediately on the scene 
those Pharisees and Scribes * who had come from Jerusalem ' on 
pwpose to watch, and, if possible, to compass the destruction of 
Jesns. As we conceive it, they met the Lord and His disciples on 
their way to Capernaum. Possibly they overtook them, as they 
nested by the way, and the disciples, or some of them, were partaking 
rf some food — perhaps, of some of the consecrated Bread of the 
previous evening. The Eeproof of Christ would be administered 
there ; then the Lord would, not only for their teaching, but for the 
purposes immediately to be indicated, turn to the multitude '/ next 'stMatt. 
would follow the remark of the disciples and the reply of the Lord, st.*MarkviL 
spoken, probably, when they were again on the way;* and, lastly, gstMatt. 
the final explanation of Christ, after they had entered the house at ^^* ^^^* 
Capernaum.^ In all probability a part of what is recorded in St. •» st Matt. 
Jonn vi, 24, &c. occurred also about the same time ; the rest on the st.*3iark * 
Sabbath which followed. 


BOOK Although the cavil of the Jerusalem Scribes may have beei 

III occasioned by seeing some of the disciples eating without first havinj 
' ^ washed their hands, we cannot banish the impression that it reflectei 
on the miraculously provided meal of the previous evening, whe; 
thousands had sat down to food without the previous observance c 
the Rabbinic ordinance. Neither in that case, nor in the present 
had the Master interposed. He was, therefore, guilty of participa 
tion in their offence. So this was all which these Pharisees an* 
Scribes could see in the miracle of Christ's feeding the multitude— 
that it had not been done according to Law ! Most strange as i 
may seem, yet in the past history of the Church, and, perhaps, some 
times also in the present, this has been the only thing which som. 
men have seen in the miraculous working of the Christ ! Perhap 
we should not wonder that the miracle itself made no deeper in: 
pression, since even the disciples * understood not ' (by reasoning 
* about the loaves ' — however they may have accounted for it in a mac 
ner which might seem to them reasonable. But, in another aspec' 
the objection of the Scribes was not a mere cavil. In truth, it r* 
presented one of the great charges which the Pharisees brougt 
against Jesus, and which determined them to seek His destruction^ 
It has already been shown, that they accoimted for the miracltf 
of Christ as wrought by the power of Satan, whose special represents 
tive — almost incarnation — they declared Jesus to be. This wou3 
not only turn the evidential force of those signs into an argumesc 
against Christ, but vindicate the resistance of the Pharisees to HI 
claims. The second charge against Jesus was, that He was ^ not * 
St. John God;' that He was *a sinner." If this could be established, 
would, of course, prove that He was not the Messiah, but a deceive 
who misled the people, and whom it was the duty of the Sanhedrd 
to unmask and arrest. The way in which they attempted to est^ 
blish this, perhaps persuaded themselves that it was so, was by provir: 
that He sanctioned in others, and Himself committed, breaches 
the traditional law ; which, according to their fundamental prince 
pies, involved heavier guilt than sins against the revealed Law 
Moses. The third and last charge against Jesus, which finaL- 
decided the action of the Council, could only be folly made at tlr 
close of His career. It might be formulated so as to meet the viei^ 
of either the Pharisees or Sadducees. To the former it might ■ 
presented as a blasphemous claim to equality with God — ^the Ve^ 
Son of the Living God. To the Sadducees it would appear as 
movement on the part of a most dangerous enthusiast — if honest as 

ix. 16, 24 



«elf-deceived, all the more dangerous ; one of those pseudo-Messiahs 
^^0 led away the ignorant, superstitious, and excitable people ; and 
wUch, if unchecked, would result in persecutions and terrible ven- 
geance by the Eomans, and in loss of the last remnants of their 
national independence. To each of these three charges, of which 
^ are now watching the opening or development, there was (from 
Ae then standpoint) only one answer : Faith in His Person. And 
Jn our time, also, this is the final answer to all diflSculties and objec- 
tions. To this faith Jesus was now leading His disciples, till, fully 
'^wdised in the great confession of Peter, it became, and has ever 
*^ce proved, the Rock on which that Church is built, against which 
^fae very gates of Hades cannot prevail. 

It was in support of the second of these charges, that the Snribes 

^0"w blamed the Master for allowing His disciples to eat without 

having previously washed, or, as St. Mark — indicating, as we shall 

see, in the word the origin of the custom — expresses it with graphic 

*^^<5tiracy : * with common hands.' * Once more we have to mark, 

^^^^ minutely conversant the Gospel-narratives are with Jewish Law 

^^ci practice. This will best appear from a brief account of this 

t::radition of the elders,' ' the more needfcd that important diflfer- 

^^ces prevail even among learned Jewish authorities, due probably 

^ the circumstance that the brief Mishnic Tractate devoted to 

^*^^ subject ' has no Gemara attached to it, and also largely treats 

^ other matters. At the outset we have this confirmation of the 

I^Ogpel language, that this practice is expressly admitted to have 

^^«n, not a Law of Moses, but * a tradition of the elders.' * Still, 

I^^Thaps on this very account, it was so strictly enjoined, that to 

^^glect it was like being guilty of gross carnal defilement. Its 

^^'^^Msion would lead to temporal destruction,' or, at least, to 


J * The word quite corresponds to the 
. ^^^^ riih term. Notwithstanding the ob- 
i^^tion of the learned Bishop Ha/neherg 
J^^tclig. Alterth. p. 476, note 288) I be- 

•^^'^it oorrespondfl to the Babbinic ^JiPii 

I -^famuf in the sense of * common,' ' not 

^ The fullest accoxmtof it within reach 

-^^ ordinary readers is in the Notes to 

^^^WiPt Porta Mosis (pp. 360-402) 

*^oiigh it Ib confused, not quite accurate, 

^^"^ based chiefly on later Jewish autho- 

r*^^«8. Swmeer{die\je^. Hebr. pp. 1175- 

r^'^^) only adds references to similar 

^*tile rites. Ooodmin^ even under the 

^T«ion of Hettinger (pp. 182-188), is in 
^ instance inferior to Pocock, JSuxtorf 

(Synag. pp. 179-184) gives chiefly illus- 
trative Jewish legends ; Otho (Lex. Babb. 
pp. 886, 886) extracts from his prede- 
cessors, to little advantage. The Bab- 
binic notes of Ligktfootf Wunsche, Schott- 
geUf and Wetstein give no clear account ; 
and the Biblical Dictionaries are either 
silent, or (as Herzog*$) very meagre. Dr. 
Geikie reproduces the inaccuracies of 
8eppy to which he adds others. 

■ Yadayiniy in four chapters, which, 
however, touches on other subjects also, 
notably on the canonicity of certain parts 
of the 0. T. 

* We refer here generally to ChuU. 
106 a, b, 106 a. 

• bot. 4 6 


poverty." Bread eaten with tmwaslien hands was as if it had been 
filth." Indeed, a Rabbi who had held this command in contempt 
was actually buried in excommunication." Thus, from their imint 
of view, the charge of the Scribes against the disciples, so far from 

: being exaggerated, is most moderately worded by the Evangelists. 
In fiiet, although at one time it had only been one of the marks of 
a Pharisee, yet at a later period to wash before eating was regarded 
as affording the ready means of recognising a Jew.* ' 

It is somewhat more difficult to account for the origin of the 
ordinance. So far as indicated, it seems to have been first enjoined 
in order to ensure that sacred offerings should not be eaten in de- 
filement. \\Tien once it became an ordinance of the elders, this 

I was, of course, regarded as sufficient ground for obedience.* Pre- 
sently, Scriptural support was souglit for it. Some based it on the 

' original ordinance of purification in Lev. sv. 1 1 ;^ while others saw in 
the words' 'Sanctify yourselves,' the. command to wash before meat; 
in the command, ' Be ye holy,' that of washing after meat ; while the 
final clause, ' for I am the Lord your God,' was regarded as enjoin- 
ing ' the grace at meat.' " For, soou it was not merely a washing 
before, hut also after meals. The former alone was, however, re- 
garded as 'a commandment ' (^isU'iA), the other only as ' a duty ' 
(Chovah), which some, indeed, explained on sanitary grounds, as 
there might be left about the hands what might prove injurious to 

; the eyes.'* Accordingly, soldiers might, in the urgency of cam- 
paigning, neglect the washing before, but they ought to be careful 
about that after meat. By-and-by, the more rigorous actuiilly washed 
between the courses, although this was declared to be pm^ly volun- 
tary.'" This washing before meals is regarded by some as referred 
to in Talmudic writings by the expression ' the first waters ' (Mayim 
rislionim), while what is called 'the second' (skeniyiin), or 'the 
other,' ' later,' or ' after-waters ' {Mayim acharonim), is supposed to 
represent the washing after meals, 

But there is another and more important aspect of the expression, 
which leads us to describe the rite itself. The distinctive designa- 
tion for it ia Netilaih Yadayim.* literally, the lifting of the hands; 
while for the washing before meat the term Meski or Meaha " 
is also used, which Uterally means 'to rub,' Both these terms 

Many illnstra.tive storii 
importiuice, on the odq 
the danger of neglecting it 
With these legends it is no 

s are given of 
hiuid, and of 

on the otiior. 

- The danger from ' Salt of Rodoin ' in 
specially meutioned. 

' nj'DJi sometimes, though rarely, 
D'T mnO. hat not nvni, which rctarf 
to ordinajf WAobing. 





point to the manner of the rite. The first question here was, whether 

* second tithe,' prepared first-fruits {Th€TU7ruih\ or even common food 

(CfcitHm), or else, * holy,' i.e. sacrificial food, was to be partaken. In ^ * ' 

the latter case a complete immersion of the hands (* baptism,' Teb- 

ifatt Tadayi7n\ and not merely a Netilath, or * uplifting,' was 

prescribed.' The latter was really an affusion. As the purifications • ohag. u. a. 

were so frequent, and care had to be taken that the water had not 

been used for other purposes, or something fallen into it that might 

discolour or defile it, large vessels or jars were generally kept for the 

purpose. These might be of any material, although stone is specially 

mentioned.* It was the practice to draw water out of these with 

what was called a natla^ or cmtila^ very often of glass, which ^innkUtv 

must hold (at least) a quarter of a log® — a measure equal to one «chuiL 

^d a half * egg-shells.' For, no less quantity than this might 6.68 6, and 

he used for affusion. The water was poured on both hands, which 

must be free of anything covering them, such as gravel, mortar, &c. 

The hands were lifted up, so as to make the water run to the ¥nri8t, 

^ order to ensure that the whole hand was washed, and that the 

^ter polluted by the hand did not again run down the fingers. 

Similarly, each hand was rubbed with the other (the fist), provided 

^he hand that rubbed had been affused ; otherwise, the rubbing 

^jght be done against the head, or even against a wall. But there 

^as one point on which special stress was laid. In the * first affasion,' 

^hich was all that originally was required when the hands were not 

Levitically * defiled,' the water had to run down to the wrist * (P^^^, 

^^ P39D *iy, lapperekj or ad happerek). If the water remained short 

^f the wrist (chuz lapperek)^ the hands were not clean.*^ Accordingly, tS"}?-, . 

^lie Words of St. Mark* can only mean that the Pharisees eat not ohuiLioe 

( *' a and 6 

except they wash their hands to the wrist.' * • st. Hark 

Allusion has already been made to what are called * the first ' and 

^he second,' or * other ' * waters.' But, in their original meaning, 
^"^se terms referred to something else than washing before and after 
^^als. The hands were deemed capable of contracting Levitical 
<iefilement, which, in certain cases, might even render the whole 

This and what follows illustrates 
^*- John ii 6. 

The language of the Mishnah shows 
~^ the woni p^, which bears as vague 
™ wide meaning as mry/xi/, which seems 
* hteral translation of it, can only apply 
^j^e wrist. 

. The rendering 'wash diligently,' 
gi^ei no meaning; that 'with the fist* 

is not in accordance with Jewish Law; 
while that • up to the elbow ' is not only 
contrary to Jewish Law, but apparently 
based on a wrong rendering of the word 
pnD. This is fully shown by Wetstein 
(N. T. i. p. 585), but his own explanation, 
that TvyfiTJ refers to the measure or 
weight of the water for washing, is 


BOOK body * unclean.' If the hands were * defiled,' two affusions were?- 
HI required : the first, or * first waters ' (inayim riaJionira) to remove- 
the defilement, and the * second,' or * after waters ' (mayim sheni — 
yirrif or acharonim) to wash away the waters that had contracted thc^ 
defilement of the hands. Accordingly, on the affusion of the first - 
waters the hands were elevated, and the water made to run down ai:- 
the wrist, while at the second waters the hands were depressed ^ 
so that the water might run off by the finger joints and tips. By- 
and-by, it became the practice to have two affusions, whenever 
Therumah (prepared first-fruits) was to be eaten, and at last even 
when ordinary food {GhvMin) was partaken of. The modem Jews 
have three affusions, and accompany the rite with a special bene- 

This idea of the * defilement of the hands' received a very 
curious application. According to one of the eighteen decrees, which, 
as we shall presently show, date before the time of Christ, the Roll 
of the Pentateuch in the Temple defiled all kinds of meat that 
touched it. The alleged reason for this decree was, that the priests 
were wont to keep the Therumah (preserved first-fruits) close to the 
Roll of the Law, on which account the latter was injured by mice. 

• shabb.i4a The Rabbiuic ordinance was intended to avert this danger.'* To 

increase the precaution, it was next laid down as a principle, that all 
»» Yad. iii. 3 that rcudcrs the TheruToah unfit, also defiles the hands.* Hence, the 
Holy Scriptures defiled not only the food but the hands that touched 
them, and this not merely in the Temple, but anywhere, while it was 
also explained that the Holy Scriptures included the whole of the 
inspired writings — the Law, Prophets, and Hagiographa. This gave 
rise to interesting discussions, whether the Song of Solomon, Ecde- 
siastes, or Esther were to be regarded as * defiling the hands,' that 
is, as part of the Canon. The ultimate decision was in favour of these 
books : * all the holy writings defile the hands ; the Song of Songs 

• Tad. iiL 6 and Ecclesiastcs defile the hands.** Nay, so far were sequences carried, 

that even a small portion of the Scriptures was declared to defile 
the hands if it contained eighty-five letters, because the smallest 
« Numb. X. * section ' (Parashah) in the Law ^ consisted of exactly that number. 
Even the Phylacteries, because they contained portions of the sacred 
text, the very leather straps by which they were bound to the head 
and arm — nay, the blank margins around the text of the Scriptures, 

> In Yad. iv. 6, the Pharisees in dis- the desire to protect the Scriptures fron^ 
pnte with the Sadducees indicate what profane use 
seems to me a far more likely reason, in 




r 1 — 


« Shabb. 
14 b, end 

or at the beginning and end of sections, were declared to defile the 
hands.* * 

From this exposition it will be understood what importance the 
Soi-ibes attached to the rite which the disciples had neglected. Yet 
at s later period Pharisaism, with characteristic ingenuity, found a 
yr^y of evading even this obUgation, by laying down what we would 
call the Popish (or semi-Popish) principle of * intention.' It was 
nxlcd, that if anyone had performed the rite of handwashing in the 
laoTning, * with intention ' that it should apply to the meals of the 
^tde day, this was (with certain precautions) valid.** But at the «» chnu. 
time of which we write the original ordinance was quite new. This 
touches one of the most important, but also most intricate questions 
JEi the history of Jewish dogmas. Jewish tradition traced, indeed, 
^He command of washing the hands before eating — at least of sacri- 
ftoiiJ offerings — to Solomon,® in acknowledgment of which * the voice 
ft^x>in heaven' {BcUh-Kol) had been heard to utter Prov. xxiii. 15, 
^Xkd xxvii. 11. But the earliest trace of this custom occurs in a 
portion of the Sibylline Books, which dates {ix)m about 160 b.c.,^ -^or-sib-iu. 

•^_ 691-593 

^tiere we find an allusion to the practice of continually washing the 

^^^^-ndg, in connection with prayer and thanksgiving.* It was reserved 

f<>x Hillel and Shammai, the two great rival teachers and heroes of 

*'^^^sh traditionalism, immediately before Christ, to fix the Babbinic 

^^dinance about the washing of hands {NetUath Yadayim), as pre- 

^'iously described. This was one of the few points on which they 

^"ere agreed,® and hence emphatically * a tradition of the Elders,' *^jf^^," *» 

since these two teachers bear, in Rabbinic writings, each the de- "^^^^^ 

®ignation of *the Elder.' ^ Then followed a period of developing jptn^ 

^i^ditionalism, and hatred of all that was Gentile. The tradition of 

the Elders was not yet so established as to conmiand absolute and 

^^i^iversal obedience, while the disputes of Hillel and Shammai, who 

^^^med almost on principle to have taken divergent views on every 

^^estion, must have disturbed the minds of many. We have an 

^^^unt of a stormy meeting between the two Schools, attended even 

^^^h bloodshed. The story is so confusedly, and so diflFerently told in 

By a cnrions inversion the law ulti- 
^tely came to be, that the Scriptures 
^^^'ywhere defiled the hands, except 
^'^^^ of the Priests in the Temple (Chel. 
5^- €). This on the groand that, taught 
^y former enactments, they had learned 
^ ^teep the Themmah far away from the 
"•^^'ed rolls, but really, as I believe, be- 
^^ the law, that the Priests' hands be- 

came defiled if they touched a copy of the 
sacred rolls, must have involved constant 

' We must bear in mind, that it was 
the work of an Eg^-ptian Jew, and I t 
cannot help feeling that the language / 
bears some likeness to what afterwards ' 
was one of the distinctive practices of 
the Essenes. 


BOOK the Jerusalem • and in the Babylon Talmud,** that it is diflScult to foi 
III • a clear view of what really occurred. Thus much, however, appe s 

-jer.shabb! — that the Shammaitcs had a majority of votes, and that * eights 

*shlbb 13 b ^^^rees ' (nan n"0 ^®^^ passed in which the two Schools agreed, wht 

*<*^** on other eighteen questions (perhaps a round number) the Sha^ 

maites carried their views by a majority, and yet other eighte 
remained undecided. Each of the Schools spoke of that day accai 
ing to its party-results. The Shammaites (such as Rabbi Eliesej 
extolled it as that on which the measure of the Law had been fill< 

• Jer. shabb. up to the fuU,® while the Hillelites (like Kabbi Joshua) deplore< 
that on that day water had been poured into a vessel full of oil, b 
which some of the more precious fluid had been spilt. In genera! 
the tendency of these eighteen decrees was of the most violentl 
anti-Gentile, intolerant, and exclusive character. Yet such valu 
was attached to them, that, while any other decree of the sages migh 
be altered by a more grave, learned, and authoritative assembly, thes 

'jer.shAbb. eighteen decrees might not, under any circumstances, be modified. 

*shabb.u6 ^^^^> besides these eighteen decrees, the two Schools on that day 
agreed in solemnly re-enacting the decrees about * the Book (the Hoi 

t^I^iid Scriptures), and the hands ' (dhmi iBDn nnni). The Babylon Talmud 
notes that the latter decree, though first made by Hillel and Shamma 
* the Elders,' was not universally carried out until re-enacted by thei 
colleges. It is important to notice, that this * Decree ' dates from th 
time just before, and was finally carried into force in the very daj 
of Christ. This fully accounts for the zeal which the Scribes di$ 
played — and explains * the extreme minuteness of details ' wit 
which St. Mark * calls attention ' to this Pharisaic practice.* Foi 

rAb.s.860 it was an express Rabbinic principle^ that, if an ordinance ha 
been only recently re-enacted (ncnn mni), it might not be called i 
question or * shaken ' (na ppDpDD ^k).^ Thus it will be seen, that th 
language employed by the Evangelist affords most valuable indirec 
confirmation of the trustworthiness of his Gospel, as not onl 
showing intimate familiarity with the mimUice of Jewish * tradition 
but giving prominence to what was then a present controversy — an< 
all this the more, that it needs intimate knowledge of that Law eve] 
fully to understand the language of the Evangelist. 

* In the • Speaker's Commentary * » This is the more striking as the sam 

(ad loo.) this • extreme minuteness of expression is used in reference to th 

details * is, it seems to me not correctly, opposition, or rather the * shaking ' o 

accounted for on the ground of * special R. Elieser ben Cbanoch at the ordin 

reference to the Judaisers who at a very ance of hand-washing, for which he w;» 

early period formed an influential party excommunicated (Qn^ mriM pDpBC 

atliome.' Eduj. v. 6). 



After this full exposition, it can only be necessary to refer in chap. 
Wefest manner to those other observances which orthodox Judaism xxxi 
"^ 'received to hold.' They connect themselves with those eighteen ' 
decrees, intended to separate the Jew from all contact with Gentiles. 
Anj contact with a heathen, even the touch of his dress, might 
involve such defilement, that on coming from the market the ortho- 
dox Jew would have to immerse. Only those who know the compli- 
cated arrangements about the defilements of vessels that were in any 
I>art, however small, hollow, as these are described in the Mishnah 
(Tractate Gheli7n\ can form an adequate idea of the painful minute- 
ness with which every little detail is treated. Earthen vessels that 
liacl contracted impurity were to be broken ; those of wood, horn, glass, 
or brass immersed ; while, if vessels were bought of Gentiles, they 
weie (as the case might be) to be immersed, put into boiling water, 
prurged with fire, or at least polished.* '^*^ sar. r. 

Let us now try to realise the attitude of Christ in regard to 
tlnese ordinances about purification, and seek to imderstand the 
roason of His bearing. That, in replying to the charge of the Scribes 
a^gr^inst His disciples, He neither vindicated their conduct, nor apolo- 
gised for their breach of the Eabbinic ordinances, implied at least 
^li. attitude of indifference towards traditionalism. This is the more 
i^oticeable, since, as we know, the ordinances of the Scribes were 
Aoclared more precious,*** and of more binding importance than »'Jer.chag. 
^Viose of Holy Scripture itself.® But, even so, the question might ejer.Bcr. 
^^86, why Christ should have provoked such hostility by placing ^^^fiiub. 
Himself in marked antagonism to what, after all, was indifferent ^^* 
^^ itself. The answer to this inquiry will require a disclosure of 
^W aspect of Rabbinism which, from its painfulness, has hitherto 
Wn avoided. Yet it is necessary not only in itself, but as showing 
^^e infinite distance between Christ and the teaching of the Syna- 
gogue. It has already been told, how Rabbinism, in the mad- 
^^8 of its self-exaltation, represented God as busying Himself by 
% with the study of the Scriptures, and by night with that of 
^te Mishnah;* and how, in the heavenly Sanhedrin, over which the «*Targuiii 
^niighty presided, the Eabbis sat in the order of their greatness, lo ; comp.' 
^d the Halachah was discussed, and decisions taken in accordance 
^th it,« Terrible as this sounds, it is not nearly all. Anthropo- • Baba 
DJ<>rphism of the coarsest kind is carried beyond the verge of pro- 

.* In this passage there is a regular to be loved (pa^^PI pD riTK). The 

^"cuasion, whether that which is opinion is in favour of the oral (miK 

^tten (the Pentateuch), or that which nB^tJ^)* 
i*<^ (tradition) is more precious and 




* AU S. n. 8. 

ClMg. 5 6 

* Ber. 8 a 

"^ Bcr. 69 a 

* Ber. 7 a ; 

T Bcr. 7 a 

* Shein. R. 
S9, comp. 

* Ber. 6 a 

> Shem. R. 
15. ed. 
Wanli. p. 23 
a, line 13 
from top 

* li. IxtL 
16; oomp. 
Numb. xxxL 

fanity, when God is represented as spending the last three hours ^ 
every day in playing with Leviathan,* and it is discussed, ho^ 
since the destruction of Jerusalem, God no longer laughs, but weep- 
and that, in a secret place of His own, according to Jer. xiii. 17- 
Nay, Jer. xxv. 30 is profanely misinterpreted as implying that, i 
His grief over the destruction of the Temple, the Almighty roac 
like a lion in each of the three watches of the night.® The iw 
tears which He drops into the sea are the cause of earthquakes 
although other, though not less coarsely realistic, explanations ar 
oflFered of this phenomenon.^ 

Sentiments like these, which occur in diflferent Rabbinic writing! 
cannot be explained away by any ingenuity of allegorical interpre 
tation. There are others, equally painful, as regards the anger c 
the Almighty, which, as kindling specially in the morning, when tb 
sun-worshippers oflFer their prayers, renders it even dangerous for m 
individual Israelite to say certain prayers on the morning of Nfe 
Year's Day, on which the throne is set for judgment.® Such realist- 
anthropomorphism, combined with the extravagant ideas of tt 
eternal and heavenly reality of Eabbinism and Rabbinic ordinance 
help us to understand, how the Almighty was actually represented a 
saying prayers. This is proved from Is. Ivi. 7. Sublime thou^ 
the language of these prayers is, we cannot but notice that the al 
covering mercy, for which He is represented as pleading, is extendi 
only to Israel.' It is even more terrible to read of God wearing tl 
TaUithy^ or that He puts on the Phylacteries, which is deduced fro- 
Is. Ixii. 8. That this also is connected with the vain-glorious boais 
ing of Israel, appears from the passages supposed to be enclosed '- 
these Phylacteries. We know that in the ordinary Phylacteri* 
these are: Exod. xiii. 1-10; 10-16; Deut. vi. 4-10; xi. 13-3 
In the Divine Phylacteries they were: 1 Chron. xvii. 21 ; Deut. i 
7-8 ; xxxiii. 29; iv. 34; xxvi. 19.^ Only one other point must ^ 
mentioned as connected with Purifications. To these also the A 
mighty is supposed to submit. Thus He was purified by Aaron, wh^ 
He had contracted defilement by descending into Egypt.* This i 
deduced from Lev. xvi. 16. Similarly, He immersed in a bath o 
fire,^ after the defilement of the burial of Moses. 

These painful details, most reluctantly given, are certainly not 
intended to raise or strengthen ignorant prejudices against Israel, to 
whom * blindness in part ' has truly happened ; far less to encourage 
the wicked spirit of contempt and persecution which is characteristicj 
not of believing, but of negative theology. But they will explain. 


lio-w Jesus could not have assumed merely an attitude of indiflference chap. 
to^wards traditionalism. For, even if such sentiments were repre- xxxi 
sented as a later development, they are the outcome of a direction, ' ' 
of \rhich that of Jesus was the very opposite, and to which it was 
antagonistic. But, if Jesus was not sent of God — not the Messiah — 
whence this wonderful contrast of highest spirituality in what He 
taught of God as our Father, and of His Kingdom as that over the 
hearts of all men ? The attitude of antagonism to traditionalism was 
never more pronounced than in what He said in reply to the charge 
of neglect of the ordinance about * the washing of hands.' Here it 
must be remembered, that it was an admitted Rabbinic principle 
that, while the ordinances of Scripture required no confirmation, 
those of the Scribes needed such,» and that no Halachah (traditional ' Jer. Taan. 
law) might contradict Scripture.* When Christ, therefore, next pro- the middle 
ceeded to show, that in a very important point — nay, in * many such 
like things ' — the Halachah was utterly incompatible with Scripture, 
tbat, indeed, they made * void the Word of God ' by their traditions 
which they had received,** He dealt the heaviest blow to tradition- *8t.Matt 
alism. Rabbinism stood self-condemned; on its own showing, it st-MarkTii. 
^ to be rejected as incompatible with the Word of God. 

It is not so easy to understand, why the Lord should, out of 
'many such things,' have selected in illustration the Sabbinic 
finance concerning vows, as, in certain circumstances^ contra- 
vening the fifth commandment. Of course, the * Ten Words ' were 
^lie Holy of Holies of the Law ; nor was there any obligation more 
^gidly observed — indeed, carried in practice almost to the verge of 
absurdity * — than that of honour to parents. In both respects, then, 
this was a specially vulnerable point, and it might well be argued 
^t, if in this Law Rabbinic ordinances came into conflict with the 
<lemands of God's Word, the essential contrariety between them 
^ugt, indeed, be great. Still, we feel as if this were not all. Was 
there any special instance in view, in which the Rabbinic law about 
votive offerings had led to such abuse ? Or was it only, that at this 
festive season the Galilean pilgrims would carry with them to Jeru- 
salem their votive offerings? Or, could the Rabbinic ordinances 
abont Hhe sanctification of the hands' {Yadayim) have recalled to 
*he Lord another Rabbinic application of the word * hand ' {yad) 
^ connection with votive offerings? It is at least suflBciently 

* It was, howerer, admitted that the • See the remarks on this point in 

Halachah sometimes went bejond the vol* i. pp. 667, 676, 677. 
I^cntateuch (Sot. 16 a), 

VOL. n. C 


BOOK curious to find mention of it here, and it will afford the opportun 
m of briefly explaining, what to a candid reader may seem alm< 

' ' '^ inexplicable in the Jewish legal practice to which Christ refers. 

At the outset it must be admitted, that Sabbinism did f 
encourage the practice of promiscuous vowing. As we view it, 
belongs, at best, to a lower and legal standpoint. In this resp< 
Eabbi Akiba put it concisely, in one of his truest sayings : * Vows s 

• Ab. liL 18 a hedge to abstinence.'* On the other hand, if regarded as a kind 
return for benefits received, or as a promise attaching to oiur praye 
a vow — unless it form part of our absolute and entire self-surrenc 
— ^partakes either of work-righteousness, or appears almost a land 
religious gambling. And so the Jewish proverb had it : * In t 

» Ber. B. 81 houT of uccd a VOW ; in time of ease excess.' ** Towards such woi 
righteousness and religious gambling the Eastern, and especially t 
Rabbinic Jew, would be particularly inclined. But even the Rab 
saw that its encouragement would lead to the profanation of wl 
was holy; to rash, idle, and wrong vows; and to the worst a 
most demoralising kind of perjury, as inconvenient consequent 
made themselves felt. Of many saj^ngs, condemnatory of t 
practice, one will suffice to mark the general feeling: <He w 

ojed«r.»a; makcB a VOW, evcu if he keep it, deserves the name of wicked 
Nevertheless, the practice must have attained terrible proportio: 
whether as regards the nimiber of vows, the lightness with whi 
they were made, or the kind of things which became their obje 
The larger part of the Mishnic Tractate on * Vows' (iVedariwi, 
eleven chapters) describes what expressions were to be regard 
as equivalent to vows, and what would either legally invalids 
and annul a vow, or leave it binding. And here we learn, tl 
those who were of full age, and not in a position of dependence (su 
as wives) would make almost any kind of vows, such as that tfa 
would not lie down to sleep, not speak to their wives or children, i 
have intercourse with their brethren, and even things more wrong 
foolish — all of which were solemnly treated as binding on the cc 
science. Similarly, it was not necessary to use the express words 
vowing. Not only the word * Korban ' — * given to God ' — but a 
similar expression, such as Konach, or Kona/m ' (the latter probal 
an equivalent for * Let it be established ! ') would suffice ; the menti 
of anything laid upon the altar (though not of the altar itself), su 

< Nedar. L as the wood. Or the fire, would constitute a vow,^ nay, the repetiti 


1 Aooordingto Nedar. 10 a, the Rabbis the Lord* (Lev. i. 2), in order that 1 
invented this word instead of ' Korban to Name of Qod might not be idly taken 


of the fonn which generally followed on the votive Konam, or Korban chap. 
^ binding force, even though not preceded by these terms. Thus, xxxi 
if a nian said : * That I eat or taste of such a thing,' it constituted a ^ ' 
^ow, which bound him not to eat or taste it, because the common 
formula was : * Korban (or Konam) that I eat or drink, or do such a 
tJ^ing,' and the omission of the votive word did not invalidate a vow, 
if it were otherwise regularly expressed.* • Jer. 

It is in explaining this strange provision, intended both to uphold i^"® ^o from 
^ke solenmity of vows, and to discourage the rash use of words, that 
the Talmud ^ makes use of the word * hand ' in a connection which * «- «. 
^e have supposed might, by association of ideas, have suggested to 
^^^uist the contrast between what the Bible and what the Rabbis 
'^Saided as * sanctified hands,' and hence between the commands of 
^od. and the traditions of the Elders. For the Talmud explains 
tl^at^ when a man simply says : * That (or if) I eat or taste such a 
^'•ing,' it is imputed as a vow, he may not eat nor taste of it, * be- 
o^^se the hand is on the Korban * ° — the mere touch of Korban had n^ d8WD • 
^xxctified it, and put it beyond his reach, just as if it had been laid PT^ 
^"^ the altar itself. Here, then, was a contrast. According to the 
^^fcbis, the touch of * a common ' hand defiled God's good gift of 
"^^«t, while the touch of * a sanctified ' hand in rash or wicked words 
^'^ght render it impossible to give anything to a parent, and so 
ii^v-olve the grossest breach of the Fifth Commandment! Such, 
^*^oording to Rabbinic Law, was the * common' and such the * sanctify- 
ing"' touch of the hands — and did sufch traditionalism not truly 
* roake void the Word of God ' ? 

A few further particulars may serve to set this in clearer light. 

It must not be thought that the pronunciation of the votive word 

* Korban^ although meaning * a gift,' or * given to God,' necessarily 

indicated a thing to the Temple. The meaning might simply be, 

^^ikd generally was, that it was to be regarded like Korban — that is, 

ibat in regard to the person or persons named, the thing termed was 

to be considered as if it were Korban^ laid on the altar, and put 

entirely out of their reach. For, although included under the one 

^^^e, there were really two kinds of vows : those of consecration to 

^^ and those of personal obligation * — and the latter were the most 


To continue. The legal distinction between a vow, an oath, and 
*the ban,' are clearly marked both in reason and in Jewish Law. 
The oath was an absolute, the vow a conditional undertaking — their 

I 8e^ Maimanides, Tad haChas., Hilc. Nedar. i. 1, 2. 

o 2 


BOOK difference being marked even by this, that the language of a vow rm 

III thuB: 'That' or *if' 'I or another do such a thing,' 'if I eat;^ 

' ^ while that of the oath was a simple afBrmation or negation,' ' 

L-.„ shall not eat.'" On the other hand, the ' ban ' might refer to one <m 

S31M K^ " three things : those dedicated for the use of the priesthood, thoM 

■ Jar. Hed. dedicated to God, or else to a sentence pronounced by the Sanhedrin.' 
<Ti« In any case it was not lawful to ' ban ' the whole of one's property 
*'*'''*''■ nor even one class of one's property (such as all one's eheep), noi 

yet what could not, in the fullest sense, be called one's property, sacl 

as a child, a Hebrew slave, or a purchased field, which had to Iw 

restored in the Year of Jubilee ; while an inherited lield, if banned 

would go in perpetuity for the use of the priesthood. Similarly, th( 

Law limited vows. Those intended to incite to an act (as on the pari 

of one who sold a thing), or by way of exaggeration, or in cases o 

mistake, and, lastly, tows which circumstances rendered impossible 

were declared null. To these four classes the Mishnah added thos< 

made to escape mtuder, robbery, and the exactions of the publicao 

pnrrtB* If a vow was regarded as rash or wrong, attempts were made 

^^w™» to open a door for repentance.' Absolutions from a vow might b- 

'Nedu. ii. obtained before a 'sage,' or, in his absence, before three laymen. 

when all obligations became null and void. At the same time th. 

■ ch^.Ls Mishnah » admits, that this power of absolving from vows was 

tradition hanging, as it were, in the air,' since it received little (o 
as Maimcmidea puts it, no) support from Scripture.* 

There can be no doubt, that the words of Christ referred to sues 
vows of personal obligation. By these a person might bind himse: 
in regard to men ot things, or else put that which was another's ou- 
of his own reach, or that which was his own out of the reach m 
another, and this as completely as if the thing or things had be^ 
Korban, a gift given to God. Thus, by simply saying, ' Konam,' a 
' Korban, that by which I might be profited by thee,' a person bonis 
himself never to toach, taste, or have anything that belonged to tb 
person so addressed. Similarly, by saying ' Korban, that by whic? 
thou mightest be profited by me,' he would prevent the person e 
addressed from ever deriving any benefit from that which belonge< 

■ Maimonidet n. s. Hilc Sbev. vi. 1. tains hangltig b; ona hair,' aluoe Sctip- 

■ This is sltt^ther a vary cmions ture ia scant on these subjeots, while taa 
Ulahaah. It adda to the remark qnoted traditional Laws are man;. 

in the text this other stgniSoant admiB- ■ On tlie sabject of Vows aee also ' Tbe 

■ion, that tba Um abont the Babbath, Templa and ita SerWces,' pp. 322-33S, 

festiTB oBerinKB, and the malvenation of The student should consult Siphri, Far 

things devoted to Ood ' are like moon- Uattoth, pp. SS i to SB b. 


to linL And so stringent was the ordinance, that (almost in the chap. 
words of Christ) it is expressly stated that such a vow was binding, xxxi 
even if what was vowed involved a breach of the Law/ It cannot be • Nedar. il s 
'denied that such vows, in regard to parents, would be binding, and 
that they were actually made.' Indeed, the question is discussed 
in the Mishnah in so many words, whether * honour of father and 
mother'^ constituted a ground for invalidating a vow, and decided ^'^^-J^* 
in the negative against a solitary dissenting voice/ And if doubt c Ned. ix. i 
•hould still exist, a case is related in the Mishnah,* in which a father •* Nedar. r. 6 
wafi thus shut out by the vow of his son from anything by which 
he might be profited by him (n^Cjg ^3p^D l^t? V3<< n;i?^)/ Thus the 
<5haige brought by Christ is in fullest accordance with the facts of 
tbe case. More than this, the manner in which it is put by St. Mark 
shows the most intimate knowledge of Jewish customs and law. 
P*OT, the seemingly inappropriate addition to our Lord's mention of 
tHe Fifth Commandment of the words : * He that revileth father or 
'^^other, he shall (let him) surely die,'® is not only explained but •kx.xxlit 
^^tidicated by the common usage of the Eabbis,^ to mention aloug 
^^th a command the penalty attaching to its breach, so as to indicate 
^lic importance which Scripture attached to it. On the other hand, 
^'l^c words of St. Mark : * Korban (that is to say, gift [viz., to God]) 
*^^t by which thou mightest be profited by me,' are a most exact 
^^'^nscription into Greek of the common formula of vowing, as given 
^^ the Mishnah and Tahnud ('^ njDJ nn^f 19-5?).* 

But Christ did not merely show the hypocrisy of the system of 

^^•Bditionalism in conjoining in the name of religion the greatest 

^^tward punctiliousness with the grossest breach of real duty. 

^«ver, alas ! was that aspect of prophecy, which in the present saw 

^tX€ future, more clearly vindicated than as the words of Isaiah to 

J^sxael now appeared in their final fulfilment: *This people honoureth 

^e with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. Howbeit, in vain 

^o they worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of 

* I can only express surprise, that and confirmed— implying, that in no cir- 

^^uehe should throw doubt upon it. cumstances could a parent partake of 

*^i« fully admitted by Levy, Targ. anything belonging to his son, if he had 

"wterb. sub ]yyp' pronounced such a vow, the only relaxa- 

..*In this case the son, desirous that tion being that in case of actual starvation 

^ father should share in the festivities (• if he have not what to eat ') the son might 

J* Ida marriage, proposed to give to a make a present to a third person, when 

Wend the court in which the banquet the father might in turn receive of it. 

**• to be held and the banquet itself, • Comp. Wiinsche, ad loc. 

but only for the purpose that his father * Other translations have been pro- 

"^ W eat and ,drink with him. The posed, but the above is taken from Nedar. 

Proposal was refused as involving sin, viii. 7, with the change only of Konam 

ud the question afterwards discussed into Korhan, 





men.' * But in thus setting forth for the first time the real characte 
of traditionalism, and setting Himself in open opposition to its fuc 
damental principles, the Christ enunciated also for the first time th 
fundamental principle of His own interpretation of the Law. That La' 
was not a system of extemalism, in which outward things affecte 
the inner man. It was moral, and addressed itself to man as 
moral being — to his heart and conscience. As the spring of a 
moral action was within, so the mode of affecting it would be inward 
Not from without inwards, but fix>m within outwards : such wais tt 
principle of the new Kingdom, as setting forth the Law in its fd 
ness and fulfilling it. * There is nothing from without the * ma3 
that, entering into him, can defile him ; but the things which pr^ 
ceed out of the man, those are they that defile the * man.' • N< 
only negatively, but positively, was this the fundamental principle 
Christian practice in direct contrast to that of Pharisaic Judaisr 
It is in this essential contrariety of principle, rather than in ai 
details, that the unspeakable difference between Christ and all coi 
temporary teachers appears. Nor is even this all. For, the princip 
laid down by Christ concerning that which entereth from witho' 
and that which cometh from within, covers, in its full applicatic^ 
not only the principle of Christian liberty in regard to the Mosa 
Law, but touches far deeper and eternal questions, affecting not on 
the Jew, but all men and to all times. 

As we read it, the discussion, to which such full reference h 
been made, had taken place between the Scribes and the Lord, whi 
the multitude perhaps stood aside. But when enunciating the grar 
principle of what constituted real defilement, * He called to Him tl 
• St Matt multitude.'* It was probably while pursuing their way to Cape 
St.* Mark vu. naum, when this conversation had taken place, that His disciples afte 
wards reported, that the Pharisees had been offended by that sayii 
of His to the multitude. Even this implies the weakness of tl 
disciples : that they were not only influenced by the good or e\ 
opinion of these religious leaders of the people, but in some measu 
sympathised with their views. All this is quite natural, and, 
bringing before us real not imaginary persons, so far evidential 
the narrative. The answer which the Lord gave the disciples bore 
twofold aspect: that of solemn warning concerning the inevitat 
fate of every plant which God had not planted, and that of wamii 


^ The quotation is a < Targ^mn,' which 
in the last clause follows almost entirely 
the LXX. 

' Mark the definite article. 
' The words in St. Mark vii. 16 are 
very donbtfol authenticity. 



^^ceming the character and issue of Pharisaic teaching, as being chap. 
^e leadership of the blind by the blind,' which must end in ruin to xxxi 

bott ' ' — ' 

But even so the words of Christ are represented in the Gospel as 
soxuiding strange and difficult to the disciples — so truthful and natural 
is tte narrative. But they were earnest, genuine men ; and when 
they reached the home in Capernaum, Peter, as the most courageous 
of them, broke the reserve — half of fear and half of reverence — which, 
despite their necessary fiamiliarity, seems to have subsisted between 
the Master and His disciples. And the existence of such reverential 
reserve in such circumstances appears, the more it is considered, yet 
another evidence of Christ's Divine Character, just as the implied 
allusion to it in the narrative is another undesigned proof of its 
truthfulness. And so Peter would seek for himself and his fellow- 
disciples an explanation of what still seemed to him only parabolic 
in the Master's teaching. He received it in the fullest manner. 
There was, indeed, one part even in the teaching of the Lord, which 
accorded with the higher views of the Rabbis. Those sins which 
Christ set before them as sins of the outward and inward man,* and 
^f what connects the two : our relation to others, were the outcome 
^f 'evil thoughts.' And this, at least, the Rabbis also taught; ex- 
plaining, with much detail, how the heart was alike the source of 
^rength and of weakness, of good and of evil thoughts, loved and 
*^^ted, envied, lusted and deceived, proving each statement from 
^^pture.* But never before could they have realised, that anything 'j^^f^ig 
^^ttting from without could not defilej[a man. Least of all could 
ttkey perceive the final inference which St. Mark long afterwards 
^^ved from this teaching of the Lord : * This He said^ making all ^f\J^^ 
^^eats clean.' ^ • cJ«»e* 

' Both these sajrings seem to have been 

^vorerbial at the time, although I am 

^able to quote any passage in Jewish 

Stings in which they occur in exactly 

*^ same form. 

' In St. Mark vii. 21 these outcomings 
^ 'evil thoughts ' are arranged in three 
S'^ps of four, characterised as in the text; 
^hile in St. Matt. xv. 19 the order of the 
^ commandments seems followed. The 
^cooimtof St. Mark is the fuller. In both 
•**ount« the expression 'blasphemy* 
(AW^/ila) — rendered in the Revised 
V^on by * railing * — seems to refer to 
<^iQnmous and evil speaking about our 
' I have accepted this rendering of the 

words,first propounded by St. Chrysostom, 
and now adopted in the Revised Ver- 
sion, although not without much mis- 
giving. For there is strong objection to it 
from the Jewish luus and views. The 
statement in Ber. 61 a, last line, 'The 
cesophagus into which entereth and, 
which casteth out all manner of meat 

seems to imply that the words of Christ 
were a proverbial expression. The Tal- 
mudic idea is based on the curious physio- 
logical notion (Midr. on Eccles. vii. 19), 
tlmt the food passed from the oesophagus 
first into the larger intestine {HamseSt 
DODn» perhaps ■■ (WMWttm), where the 
food was supposed to be crushed as in a 




• Acts X. 14 

Yet another time had Peter to learn that lesson, when his resist—- 
ance to the teaching of the vision of the sheet let down from heaven «i 
was silenced by this: *What God hath cleansed, make not thoa^i 
common.'* Not only the spirit of legalism, but the very terms .a 
* common ' (in reference to the unwashen hands) and * making clean '^ 
are the same. Nor can we' wonder at this, if the vision of Peter 
real, and not, as negative criticism would have it, invented so as 
make an imaginary Peter — Apostle of the Jews — speak and act like!^ 
Paul. On that hypothesis, the correspondence of thought and ex — 
pression would seem, indeed, inexplicable ; on the former, the Peter-— 
who has had that vision, is telling through St. Mark the teaching 
that underlay it all, and, as he looked back upon it, drawing fron: 
it the inference which he understood not at the time: 'This Hi 
said, making all meats clean.' 

A most difficult lesson this for a Jew, and for one like Peter, na; 
for us all, to learn* And still a third time had Peter to learn i 
when, in his fear of the Judaisers from Jerusalem, he made tha 

common which God had made clean, had care of the unwashen handF=s 
but forgot that the Lord had made clean all meats. Terrible, im 
must have been that contention which followed between Pai 
and Peter. Eighteen centuries have passed, and that fatal stril 
is still the ground of theological contention against the truth 
Eighteen centuries, and within the Chmrch also the strife still coi 
tinues. Brethren sharply contend and are separated, because th< 
will insist on that as of necessity which should be treated as of ii 
difference : because of the not eating with unwashen hands, forgel 
ful that He has made all meats clean to him who is inwardly an. 
spiritually cleansed. 

mUl (Vajjik R. 4 ; 18 ; Midr. on Eccl. 
xii. 3), and thence only, through yarious 
organs, into the stomach proper. (As re- 
gaids the process in animals, see Lewy* 
iohn, Zool. d. Talm. pp. 37-40.) (The 
passage from Ber. 61 a has been so 
rendered by Wuruche, in his note on St. 
Matt. XV. 17, as to be in parts well nigh 
unintelligible.) It may interest students 
that the strange word ii^tZp^p, rendered 
both in the A. V. and the R. V. by 
'draught/ seems to correspond to the 

Babbinic Aphidra (K"1*T^&K)* which 
Levy renders by * the floor of a stable 
formed by the ezcremQnts of the animals 
which are soaked and stamped into a 
hard mass.' 

^ It is, of course, well known that the 
reasoning of the Tubingen school and of 
kindred negatiye theology is based on a 
supposed contrariety between the Petrine 
and Pauline direction, and that this 
again is chiefly based on the oocnirenoe 
in Antiooh recorded in Gal. iL 11 &a 






(St. John vi. 22-71.)* 



E narrative now returns to those who, on the previous evening, 

after the miraculous meal, been ' sent away ' to their homes. 

^ remember, that this had been after an abortive attempt on their 

to take Jesus by force and make Him their Messiah-Eong. We 

understand how the effectual resistance of Jesus to their purpose 

t only weakened, but in great measure neutralised, the effect 

the miracle which they had witnessed. In fact, we look upon 

is check as the first turoing of the tide of popular enthusiasm. 

I^— -^ us bear in mind what ideas and expectations of an altogether 

^^^^crtemal character those men connected with the Messiah of their 

^x-i€am8. At last, by some miracle more notable even than the giving 

^^ the Manna in the wilderness, enthusiasm had been raised to the 

■highest pitch, and thousands were determined to give up their 

pilgrimage to the Passover, and then and there proclaim the Galilean 

Teacher Israel's King. If He were the Messiah, such was His right- 

^ title. Why then did He so strenuously and effectually resist it ? 

^ ignorance of His real views concerning the Kingship, they would 

^^^hiially conclude that it must have been from fear, from misgiving, 

^ want of beUef in Himself. At any rate. He could not be the 

^ssiah. Who would not be Israel's King. Enthusiasm of this kind, 

ouce repressed, could never be kindled again. Henceforth there was 

<»Jitinuou8 misunderstanding, doubt, and defection among former 

-^erents, growing into opposition and hatred unto death. Even 

to those who took not this position, Jesus, His Words and Works, 

were henceforth a constant mystery.* And so it came, that the mom- 

* It is specially requested, that this of the fate of Elijah on the morning 

-eb^^t be read along with the text of after the miracle on Mount Carmel. Yet 

Scrittture. how different the bearing of Christ from 

' We are here involuntarily reminded that of tho great Prophet I 






• VT, 22, 24 

b St John 
« Ter. S9 




ing after the miraculous meal found the vast majority of those who 
had been fed, either in their homes or on their pilgrim-way to the 
Passover at Jerusalem. Only comparatively few came back to seek 
Him, where they had eaten bread at His Hand. And even to them, 
as the after-conversation shows, Jesus was a mystery. They could 
not disbelieve, and yet they could not believe; and they sought both 
* a sign ' to guide, and an explanation to give them its understand- 
ing. Yet out of them was there such selection of grace, that all 
that the Father had given would reach Him, and that they who» 
by a personal act of believing choice and by determination of con- 
viction, would come, should in nowise be rejected of Him. 

It is this view of the mental and moral state of those who, on 
the morning after the meal, came to seek Jesus, which alone explains 
the questions and answers of the interview at Capernaum. As we 
read it : * the day following, the multitude which stood on the other 
[the eastern] side of the sea ' * saw that Jesus was not there, neither 
His disciples.' * But of two facts they were cognisant. They knew 
that, on the evening before, only one boat had come over, bringing 
Jesus and His disciples ; and that Jesus had not returned in it with 
His disciples, for they had seen them depart, while Jesus remained to 
dismiss the people. In these circumstances they probably imagined^ 
that Christ had returned on foot by land, being, of course, ignorant 
of the miracle of that night. But the wind which had been contrary 
to the disciples, had also driven over to the eastern shore a nurnb^* 
of fishing-boats from Tiberias (and this is one of the undesigned 
confirmations of the narrative). These they now hired, and came 
to Capernaum, making inquiry for Jesus. Whether on that Friday 
afternoon they went to meet Him on His way from Gennesaret 
(which the wording of St. John vi. 25 makes likely), or awaited His 
arrival at Capernaum, is of little importance. Similarly, it is diffi- 
cult to determine whether the conversation and outlined address 
of Christ took place on one or partly on several occasions : on the 
Friday afternoon and Sabbath morning, or only on the Sabbath. All 
that we know for certain is, that the last part (at any rate ^) was 
spoken * in Synagogue, as He taught in Capernaum.' ^ It has been 
well observed, that * there are evident breaks after verse 40 and 
verse 51.' * Probably the succession of events may have been, that 
part of what is here recorded by St. John ^ had taken place when 
those from across the Lake had first met Jesus ; * part on the way 
to, and entering, the Synagogue;^ and part as what He spoke in His 

* Westcatt, ad loc. 


Discourse,' and then after the defection of some of His former dis- 
ciples." But we can only soggest such aa arrangement, since it 
woxild have been quite consistent with Jewish practice, that the • 
greater part should have taken place in the Synagogue itself, the ' 
Jewish questions and objections representing either an irregular 
m -wining commentary on His Words, or expressions daring breaks in, 
<Hr at the conclusion of, His teaching. 

This, however, is a primary requirement, that, what Christ is 

reported to have spoken, should appear suited to His hearers : such as 

would appeal to what they knew, such also as they could understand. 

Tliis must be kept in view, even while admitting that the Evangelist 

wrote his Crospel in the light of much later and fuller knowledge, 

and for the instruction of the Christian Church, and that there may 

be keakg and omissiong in the reported, as compared with the original 

tJisocmrBe, which, if supplied, would make its understanding much 

cwner to a Jew. On the other hand, we have to bear in mind all the 

*=ircQtiutances of the case. The Discourse in question was delivered 

in the dty, which had been the scene of so many of Christ's great 

"i'scles, and the centre of His teaching, and in the Synagogue, built 

«J the good Centurion, and of which Jaims was the chief ruler. 

Here we have the outward and inward conditions for even the most 

wwnoed teaching of Christ. Again, it was delivered under twofold 

■"•■ral conditions, to which we may expect the Discourse of Christ to 

^ ad^ited. For, first, it was after that miraculous feeding which 

^ n^sed the popular enthusiasm to the highest pitch, and also 

■ner that chilling disappointment of their Judaistic hopes in Christ's 

i^owtt resistance to His Messianic proclamation. They now came 

'leelring for Jesas,' in every sense of the word. They knew not 

what to make of those, to them, contradictory and irreconcilable 

™**; they came, because they did eat of the loaves, without 

ffoog in them ' signs.' • And therefore they came for such a ' sign ' • 

uthey could perceive, and for such teaching in interpretation of it 

" they could understand. They were outwardly — by what had 

''•ppened— prepared for the very highest teaching, to which the 

I^weding events had led up, and therefore they must receive such, 

" My. But they were not inwardly prepared for it, and therefore 

^ could not understand it. Secondly, and in connection with 

It) we mnst remember that two high points had been reached — by 

t^K people, that Jesus was the Messiah-King ; by the ship's company, 

^"t He was the Son of G-od. However imperfectly these truths may 

hn been apprehended, yet the teaching of Christ, if it was to be pro- 




• St. John 
vi, 25-29 

t» Shabb. 
30 6; Jer. 
ShekALvi. 2 

« Chcthnb. 

gressive, must start from them, and then point onwards and upwai 
In this expectation we shall not be disappointed. And if, by the sic 
of all this, we shall find allusions to pecuUarly Jewish thoughts 
views, these will not only confirm the Evangelic narrative, but fumi^l 
additional evidence of the Jewish authorship of the Fourth Grospel. 

1 . The question * : * Rabbi, when camest Thou hither ? ' with whieli 
they from the eastern side greeted Jesus, seems to imply that they were^ 
perplexed about, and that some perhaps had heard a vague rumour of 
the miracle of. His return to the western shore. It was the beginning 
of that unhealthy craving for the miraculous which the Lord had so 
sharply to reprove. In £Us own words : they sought £Um not because 
they * saw signs,' but because they * ate of the loaves,' and, in their 
coarse love for the miraculous, * were filled.' ^ WTiat brought them, 
was not that they had discerned either the higher meaning of that 
miracle, or the Son of God, but those carnal Judaistic expectancies 
which had led them to proclaim Him King. What they waited for, 
was a Kingdom of God — not in righteousness, joy, and peace in the 
Holy Ghost, but in meat and drink — a kingdom with miraculous 
wilderness-banquets to Israel, and coarse miraculous triumphs over 
the Gentiles. Not to speak of the fabulous Messianic banquet which 
a sensuous realism expected, or of the achievements for which it 
looked, every figure in which prophets had clothed the brightness of 
those days was first literalised, and then exaggerated, till the most 
glorious poetic descriptions became the most repulsively incongruous 
caricatures of spiritual Messianic expectancy. The fruit-trees were 
every day, or at least every week or two, to yield their riches, the 
fields their harvests ; ^ the grain was to stand like palm trees, and to 
be reaped and winnowed without labour.® Similar blessings were to 
visit the vine ; ordinary trees would bear like fruit trees, and every 
produce, of every clime, would be found in Palestine in such abundance 
and luxuriance as only the wildest imagination could conceive. 

Such were the carnal thoughts about the Messiah and £Us Kingdom 
of those who sought Jesus because they * ate of the loaves, and were 
filled.' What a contrast between them and the Christ, as He pointed 
them from the search for such meat to * work for the meat which He 
would give them,' not as merely a Jewish Messiah, but as * the Son 
of Man.' And yet, in uttering this strange truth, Jesus could appeal 
to something they knew when He added, * for Him the Father hath 
sealed, even God.' The words, which seem almost inexplicable in 

* Canon Wettcctt notes the intended ally, ** were satisfied with food as animal b 
realism in the choice of words : ' Liter- with fodder " '—ixofrrdtreftrf. 


^his connection, become clear when we remember thaJt this was a chap. 
well-known Jewish expression. According to the Eabbis, * the seal xxxii 
of God was Truth (AeMceTHy the three letters of which this word 
IS oomposed in Hebrew (now) being, as was significantly pointed 
out;, respectively the first, the middle, and the last letters of the 
alplaabet." Thus the words of Christ would convey to His hearers *'^®*;-^*^',± for the real meat, which would endure to eternal life — for the »• si 
bet: ter Messianic banquet — they must come to Him, because God had 
inn pressed upon Him His own seal of truth, and so authenticated His 
T&SLching and Mission. 

In passing, we mark this as a Jewish allusion, which only a Jewish 

wri-ter (not an Ephesian Gospel) would have recorded. But it is by 

no Tneans the only one. It almost seems like a sudden gleam of 

liglut — as if they were putting their hand to this Divine Seal, when 

tlk^j now ask Him what they must do, in order to work the Works of 

Grcxl ? Yet strangely refracted seems this ray of light, when they 

coTiMiect the Works of God with their own doing. And Christ directed 

tti^enij as before, only more clearly, to Himself. To work the Works of 

^od they must not do, but believe in Him WTiom God had sent. 

T'heir twofold error consisted in imagining, that they could work 

tho Works of God, and this by some doing of their own. On the 

ot-lxer hand, Christ would have taught them that these Works of God 

^^re independent of man, and that they would be achieved through 

^^aii's faith in the Mission of the Christ. 

2. As it impresses itself on our minds, what now follows ^ took *> st. joun 

place at a somewhat different time — perhaps on the way to the 

^yiiagogue. It is a remarkable circumstance, that among the ruins 

^ the Synagogue of Capernaum the lintel has been discovered, and 

^oat it bears the device of a pot of manna, ornamented with a flowing 

Pattern of vine leaves and clusters of grapes.^ Here then were the 

outward emblems, which would connect themselves with the Lord's 

*^hing on that day. The miraculous feeding of the multitude in 

^'^e* desert place' the evening before, and the Messianic thoughts 

^nich clustered around it, would naturally suggest to their minds 

remembrance of the manna. That manna, which was Angels' food, 

^*^^ed (as they imagined) from the upper light, *the dew from 

above '« — miraculous food, of all manner of taste, and suited to every • voma 75 

m^i according to the wish or condition of him who ate it,^ but bitter- * shcm. n. 

0688 to Gentile palates — they expected the Messiah to bring again 

fc>in heaven. For, all that the first deliverer, Moses, had done, the 

> Comp. • Sketches of Jewish Social Life,' pp. 266, 257. 





•Midr. on 
Eccles. i. 9 

•» Targ. 
on Deut. 
xxxIt. 8 ; 

• Prov. ix.e 


Cbag. 14 a 

second — ^Messiah — would also do.* And here, over their Synagogue, 
was the pot of manna — symbol of what God had done, earnest of 
what the Messiah would do: that pot of manna, which was now 
among the things hidden, but which Elijah, when he came, would 
restore again ! 

Here, then, was a real sign. In their view the events of yester- 
day must lead up to some such sign, if they had any real meaning. . 
They had been told to believe on Him, as the One authenticated by " 
God with the seal of Truth, and Who would give them meat to — 
eternal life. By what sign would Christ corroborate His assertion, ^ 
that they might see and believe? What work would He do to^ 
vindicate His claim ? Their fathers had eaten manna in the wilder — 
ness. To understand the reasoning of the Jews, implied but not fiilly^ 
expressed, as also the answer of Jesus, it is necessary to bear in mini 
(what forms another evidence of the Jewish authorship of the Fourtl 
Gospel), that it was the oft and most anciently expressed opinio: 
that, although God had given them this bread out of heaven, yet i 
was given through the merits of Moses, and ceased with his deathJ 
This the Jews had probably in view, when they asked : * What^ 
workest Thou ? ' ; and this was the meaning of Christ's emphati(;S 
assertion, that it was not Moses who gave Israel that bread. AndK 
then by what, with all reverence, may still be designated a peculiarly^ 
Jewish turn of reasoning — such as only those familiar with Jevrish^ 
literature can fully appreciate (and which none but a Jewish reporteirs 
would have inserted in his Gospel) — the Saviour makes quite different^ 
yet to them familiar, application of the manna. Moses had not give: 
it — his merits had not procured it — but His Father gave them th 
true bread out of heaven. * For,' as He explained, * the bread of 
is that* which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the^ 
world.' Again, this very Rabbinic tradition, which described in such- 
glowing language the wonders of that manna, also further exj^laineA 
its other and real meaning to be, that if Wisdom said, * Eat of my 
bread and drink of my wine,'® it indicated that the manna and 
the miraculous water-supply were the sequence of Israel's receiving 
the Law and the Commandments * — for the real bread from heaven 
was the Law.* * 

» Not as in the A.V. of ver. 33: 'He 
^Vhich cometh down from heaven.* The 
alteration is most important tn the align- 
ment as addressed to the Jews ; the one 
they could understand and would admit, 
not so the other. 

« In the Midrash on Eccl. ii. 24 ; lit 
12 ; viii. 15, we are told, that when in 
Eoclesiastes we read of eating and drink- 
ing, it always refers to the Law and good 


It was an appeal which the JewB understood, and to which they chap. 
could not but respond. Yet the mood was brief. An Jesus, in xxxn 
ansver to the ^peal that He would evermore give them this bread, ~~~~' ' 
«nc« more directed them to Himself — &om works, of men to the 
Wcnb of Gxid and to &uth — the passing gleam of spiritual hope had 
already died out, for they had seen Him and ' yet did not believe.' 

With these words of mingled sadness and judgment, Jesus turned 
awayfrom His questioners. The solemn sayings which now followed' J^^,^" 
could not have been spoken to, and they would not have been 
D&deiEtood by, the multitude. And accordingly we find that, when 
ttw conversation of the Jews is once more introduced,'' it takes up '*=-« 
the thread where it had been broken off, when Jesus spake of Himself 
*a the Bread Which bad come down from heaven. Had they heard 
*hat, in our view, Jesus spake only to His disciples, their objections 
•■Quid have been to more than merely the incongruity of Christ's 
claiiQ to have come down from heaven.' 

3. Regarding these words of Christ, then, as addressed to the dis- 
ciples, there is really nothing in them beyond their standpoint, though 
they open views of the far horizon. They had the experience of the 
t^iging of the young man at Nain, and there, at Capernaum, of Jairus' 
danghter. Besides, believing that Jesus was the Messiah, it might 
Perh^ not be quite strange nor new to them as Jews — although 
Oot commonly received — that He would at the end of the world 
'^'se the pious dead.' Indeed, one of the names given to the 
"tesoah — that of Jinnon, according to Ps. Ixiii. 1 7 ■= — has by some ' s»niu w » 
pe«n derived from this very expectancy.'* Again, He had said, that p*''i'5;f'"'' 
't -vBg not any Law, but His Person, that was the bread which came S[**^^ 
"^Oini from heaven, and gave life, not to Jews only, but unto the i*mb.ifc'«»ft 
^~dr{d — and they had seen Him and believed not. But none the less 
^"csnld the loving purpose of God be accomplished in the totality of 
■^•is ti-ne people, and ita joyous reality be experienced by every in- 
«iividaal among them : ' (The) All [the totality, irav o] which the 
father giveth Me shall come unto Me [shall reach Me '], and him 
"^^aat cometh unto Me [the coming one to Me] I will not cast out 
**aUide.' What follows is merely the carrying out in all directions, 
*nd to its fullest consequences, of this twofold fundamental principle, 
"^e totality of the God-given would really reach Him, despite all 

g anived at this concli 

t Canon Wetteatt has ex 
PsMd the Bame viewH, and I rejoice ia digeuMed. 
"^ /ortified by lo great on anthoiit;. ■ So Canon Weitcatt. 

' Bat oot here uid there one dead. In 





• St Jobn 
vL 41-61 

hindrances, for the object of His Coming was to do the Will of H 
Father ; and those who came would not be cast outside, for the W 
of Him that had sent Him, and which He had come to do, was th 
of * tJie all which He has given ' Him, He * should not lose anythh 
out of this, but raise it up in the last day.' Again, the totality- 
the all — would reach Him, since it was the Will of Him that seo 
Him * that everyone {irds) who intently looketh * at the Son, ai 
believeth on Him, should have eternal life;' and the coming on 
would not be cast outside, since this was His undertaking and pr 
mise as the Christ in regard to each : ^ And raise him up will I 
the last day.' 

Although these wonderful statements reached in their full mea 
ing far beyond the present horizon of His disciples, and even to tl 
utmost boimds of later revelation and Christian knowledge, there 
nothing in them which would have seemed absolutely strange or u. 
intelligible to those who heard them. Given belief in the Messia. 
ship of Jesus and His Mission by the Father ; given experience 
what He had done, and perhaps, to a certain extent, Jewish e 
pectancy of what the Messiah would do in the last day ; and s 
this directed or corrected by the knowledge concerning His wo 
which His teaching had imparted, and the words were intelligib 
and most suitable, even though they would not convey to them J 
that they mean to us. If so seemingly incongruous an illustrati^ 
might be used, they looked through a telescope that was not y 
drawn out, and saw the same objects, though quite diminutively aJ 
fer otherwise than we, as gradually the hand of Time has drawn o 
fully that through which both they and we, who believe, intent 
gaze on the Son. 

4. What now follows * is again spoken to ^ the Jews,' and mj 
have occurred just as they were entering the Synagogue. To tho 
spiritually unenlightened, the point of difficulty seemed, how Chri 
could claim to be the Bread come down from heaven. Making tl 
largest allowance. His known parentage and early history * forbac 
anything like a literal interpretation of His Words. But this ij 
ability to understand, ever brings out the highest teaching of Chris 
We note the analogous fact, and even the analogous teaching, in tl 

' Mark the special meaning of Otwp&r, 
as previously explained. 

' This is not narrated in the Fourth 
Gospel. But aUosions like this cover 
the whole early history of Jesus, and 
prove that omissions of the most im- 

portant facts in the history of Jesus a 
neither due to ignorance of them on tl 
part of the writer of the Fourth Qos^ 
nor to the desire to eipress by silen< 
his dissent from the accounts of the 8yi 


case of Nicodemus.* ^ Only, his was the misunderstanding of igno- chap. 
ranee, theirs of wilful resistance to His Manifestation ; and so the xxxii 
tone towards them was other than to the Rabbi. ^1777 

* St. John 

Yet we also mark, that what Jesus now spake to * the Jews ' was ^^^ 
tlie same in substance, though different in application, from what 
He had just uttered to the disciples. This, not merely in regard to 
the Messianic prediction of the Resurrection, but even in what He 
pronounced as the judgment on their murmuring. The words : * No 
man can come to Me, except the Father Which hath sent Me draw 
him,' present only the converse aspect of those to the disciples: * All 
that which the Father giveth Me shall come unto Me, and him that 
Cometh unto Me I will in no wise cast out.' For, far from being 

* judgment on, it would have been an excuse of, Jewish unbelief, 
*^d, indeed, entirely discordant with all Christ's teaching, if the in- 
ability to come were regarded as other than moral, springing from 
^^^^an's ignorance and opposition to spiritual things. No man can 
^^me to the Christ — such is the condition of the human mind and 
^^art, that coming to Christ as a disciple is, not an outward, but an 
uiward, not a physical, but a moral impossibility — except the Father 

* draw him.' And this, again, not in the sense of any constraint, but 
in that of the personal, moral, loving influence and revelation, to 
^hich Christ refers when He saith : * And I, if I be lifted up from 

the earth, will draw all men unto Myself.' ^ b st, Joim 

Nor did Jesus, even while uttering these high, entirely un-Jewish * ^ 
^niths, forget that He was speaking them to Jews. The appeal to 
^heir own Prophets was the more telling, that Jewish tradition also 
applied these two prophecies (Is. liv. 13 ; Jer. xxxi. 34) to the teach- 
^^ by God in the Messianic Age.*^* But the explanation of the • 
^^^^ner and issue of God's teaching was new : ^ Everyone that hath 96 on oen. 

\ xlvi. S8 • 

^eatd from the Father, and learned, cometh unto Me.' And this, not Jerem. xxxl 

vy 8oine external or realistic contact with God, such as they regarded voi. u. p. 

^^ of Moses in the past, or expected for themselves in the latter 

^ys ; only * He Which is from God, He hath seen the Father.' But 

^^eu this might sound general and without exclusive reference to 

^st. So, also, might this statement seem : ^ He that believeth ^ 

"^ eternal life.' Not so the final application, in which the subject was 

^ed to its ultimate bearing, and all that might have seemed general 

®' mysterious plainly set forth. The Personality of Christ ivas the 

^ Canon Weiteott has called attention times, see the Appendix on Messianic pas- 

^^ sages. 

' Por other Babhinic applications of ■ The words 'on Me ' are spurious. 

^^ Terses to the Messiah and His 

VOU n. D 



Bread of Life : ^ I am the Bread of I^fe.' * The Manna had not beei 
bread of life, for those who ate it had died, their carcases had fallen ii 
the wilderness. Not so in regard to this, the true Bread from heaven 
To share in that Food was to have everlasting life, a life which the 
and death of imbelief and judgment would not cut short, as it had tha*. 
of them who had eaten the Manna and died in the wilderness. It wa- 
another and a better Bread which came from heaven in Christ, 
another, better, and deathless life which was connected with it : ^ th» 
Bread that I will give is My Flesh,* for the life of the world.' 

5. These words, so deeply significant to us, as pointing out 
true meaning of all His teaching, must, indeed, have sounded m( 
mysterious. Yet the fact that they strove about their meaning show&^'^^ivs; 
that they must have had some glimmer of apprehension that it bon^cr^iie 
on His self-surrender, or, as they might view it, His martyrdom. 

T. 58-«8 last point is set forth in the concluding Discourse,^ which we kn( 
to have been delivered in the Synagogue, whether before, during, 
after, His regular Sabbath address. It was not a mere martyTd( 
for the life of the world, in which all who benefited by it would 
but personal fellowship with Him. Eating the Flesh and drinking 
Blood of the Son of Man, such was the necessary condition of securi] 
eternal life. It is impossible to mistake the primary reference 
these words to our personal application of His Death and Passion 
the deepest need and hunger of our souls ; most difficult, also, 
resist the feeling that, secondarily,^ they referred to that Holy Fe^^- 
which shows forth that Death and Passion, and is to all time its v^ 
membrance, symbol, seal, and fellowship. In this, also, has the 
of History drawn out the telescope ; and as we gaze through it, eve 
sentence and word sheds light upon the Cross and light from 
Cross, carrying to us this twofold meaning: His Death, and n^^ 
Celebration in the great Christian Sacrament. 

6. But to them that heard it, nay even to many of His discipl^^ 
this was an hard saying. Who could bear it ? For it was a thorou^ 
disenchantment of all their Judaic illusions, an entire upturning 
all their Messianic thoughts, and that, not merely to those wh(^' 
views were grossly carnal, but even to many who had hitherto be^ 
drawn closer to Him. The * meat ' and ^ drink ' from heaven whitf 
had the Divine seal of ^ truth ' were, according to Christ's teachiu 
not Hhe Law,' nor yet Israel's privileges, but fellowship with tl 

> The words in the A. V. * which I wiU can only be secondary. Mark here s 

g^ve ' are spurious. cially, that in the latter we have ' 

« Canon Wettcott (ad loc.) clearly shows. Body,' not • the Flesh,' of the Lord, 
that the reference to the Holy Sapper 


Person of Jesue in that state of humbleness (' the Son of Joseph,' '), chap. 
iiay, of martyrdom, which His words seemed to indicate, ' My Flesh xxxii 
is the true ' meat, and My Blood is the true drink ; ' " and what even ^" '~ ' 
this fellowship secured, consisted only in abiding in Him and He in > nr. u 
them ;' or, as they would understand it, in inner communion with ' "'■■ " 
Him, and in sharing His condition and views. Truly, this was a 
totally different Messiah and Messianic Kingdom from what they 
either conceived or wished. 

Though they spake it not, this was the rock of offence over 

'hich they stumbled and fell. And Jesus read their thoughts. 

ffow unfit were they to receive all that was yet to happen in con- 

QectioD with the Christ — how unprepared for it ! If they stumbled 

»t this, what when they came to contemplate ' the fer more myste- 

lioQs and on-Jewish facts of the Messiah's Crucifixion and Ascension ! * ' w. « 

Truly, not outward following, but only inward and spiritual life- 

Itiickeniiig could be of profit — even in the case of those who heard 

tile very Words of Christ, which were spirit and life. Thus it again 

appeared, and most fully, that, morally speaking, it was absolutely 

ioDposrible to come to Him, even if His Words were heard, except 

ttnder the gracious influence from above."* . y„. u ; 

And so this was the great crisis in the History of the Christ, stI'm'^'' 

W"e have traced the gradual growth and development of the popular 

moTement, till the murder of the Baptist stirred popular feeling to 

its inmost depth. With his death it seemed as if the Messianic hope, 

awakened by his preaching and testimony to Christ, were &ding from 

'new. It was a terrible disappointment, not easily home. Now must 

it be decided, whether Jesue was really the Messiah. His Works, 

notwithstanding what the Pharisees said, seemed to prove it. Then 

let it appear ; let it come, stroke upon stroke — each louder and more 

effective than the other — till the land rang with the shout of victory 

and the world itself re-echoed it. And bo it seemed. That miracu- 

lons feeding — that wilderness-cry of Hosanna to the Galilean King- 

Meniah from thousands of Galilean voices — what were they but its 

'•^inning? All the greater was the disappointment ; first, in the re- 

presrion of the movement — so to speak, the retreat of the Messiah, 

Hi* voluntary abdication, rather, His defeat ; then, next day, the incon- 

gniotisness of a King, Whose few unlearned followers, in their igno- 

fWce and on-Jewish neglect of most sacred ordinances, outraged 

' Comp. here tiie remarks on vcr. 27, 
■iMt Tralh as tbe seal with which God 


every Jewiali feeling, and vhose cooduct was even vindicated b; 
their Master in a. general attack on all traditionalism — that basis o 
Judaism — as it might be represented, to the contempt of religioi 
and even of common truthfulness in the denunciation of solenu 
vows ! This was not the Messiah Whom the many — nay, 'Whoa 
almost any — would own." 

Here, then, we are at the parting of the two ways; and, jus 
because it was the hour of decision, did Christ so clearly set fort^ 
the highest truths concerning Himself, in opposition to the riew 
which the multitude entertained about the Messiah. The result wa 
yet another and a sorer defection. * Upon this many of His disciple 
went back, and walked no more with Him.' " Nay, the searchin. 
trial reached even unto the hearts of the Twelve. Would they als 
go away ? It was an anticipation of Gethsemane — its first ezpa 
rience. But one thing kept them true. It was the experience ■ 
the past. This was the basis of their present &ith and allegiane 
They could not go back to their old past ; they must cleave to Hiir 
So Peter spake it in name of them all : * Lord, to whom shall we g^ 
Words of Eternal Life hast Thou ! ' Nay, and more than this, as tM 
result of what they had learned : ' And we have believed and kna 
that Thou art the Holy One of God.* ' It is thus, also, that many 
us, whose thoughts may have been sorely tossed, and whose found, 
tions terribly assailed, may have found our first resting-place in fM 
assured, unassailable spiritual experience of the past. Whither cf 
we go for Words of Eternal Life, if not to Christ ? If He fails u 
then all hope of the Eternal is gone. But He has the Words 
Eternal life — and we believed when they first oame to us ; nay, ^ 
know that He is the Holy One of God, And this conveys all th» 
Mth needs for further learning. The rest will He show, when He 
transfigured in our sight. 

But of these Twelve Christ knew one to be * a devil ' — like th* 
Angel, fallen from highest height to lowest depth.* The apostv- 
of Judas had already commenced in his heart. And, the greater tt 
popular expectancy and disappointment had been, the greater I'M 
reaction and the enmity that followed. The hour of decision w^ 
past, and the hand on the dial pointed to the hour of His Death. 

■ This 19 the readiDg ot all the best ' The right readme of ver. 71 is: ■ Jad* 

U8S.,aiidiiotaaiatlieA. V. 'thatChrist, the son of Simoo Iscariot,' that is, '> 

the Son of the Living God.' For the his- man of Kerioth,' Seriath was in Jndtf 

tor; of ibe vaiutioDS by which this (Joeh. xv. 26), and Judas, it will Iw 

ctuuige was brought about, see Weitoatt, lemembered. the onl; Jnd^an disciple of 

•d loc. Jesus. 



(St. Matt. XV. 21-28 ; St. Mark vii. 24-30.) 

The purpose of Christ to withdraw His disciples from the excitement chap. 
of Galilee, and from what might follow the execution of the Baptist, xxxin 
l^ad been interrupted by the events at Bethsaida- Julias, but it was 
not changed. On the contrary, it must have been intensified. That 
'^ild, popular outburst, which had almost forced upon Him a Jewish 
Messiah-Kingship ; the discussion with the Jerusalem Scribes about 
the washing of hands on the following day ; the Discourses of the 
^bbath, and the spreading disaflfection, defection, and opposition 
^tich were its consequences — all pointed more than ever to the 
^^essity of a break in the publicity of His Work, and to withdrawal 
^ohq that part of Galilee. The nearness of the Sabbath, and the 
^^fcumstance that the Capernaum-boat lay moored on the shore of 
^^thsaida, had obliged Him, when withdrawing from that neigh- 
bourhood, to return to Capernaum. And there the Sabbath had to 
^ spent — in what manner we know. But as soon as its sacred 
^^st was past, the journey was resumed. For the reasons already 
^^lained, it extended much further than any other, and into regions 
^*Uch, we may venture to suggest, would not have been traversed 
^Ut for the peculiar circumstances of the moment. 

A comparatively short journey would bring Jesus and His com- 
P^ions from Capernaum * into the parts,' or, as St. Mark more spe- 
^cally calls them, * the borders of Tyre and Sidon.' At that time 
t^is district extended, north of Galilee,* from the Mediterranean to • /«• 'f^^ 

\\x , ill. 8. 1 

^»ie Jordan. But the event about to be related occurred, as all circum- 

*^ce8 show, not within the territory of Tyre and Sidon, but on its 

"orfers, and within the limits of the Land of Israel. If any doubt 

^iild attach to the objects w^hich determined Christ's journey to those 

P^ it would be removed by the circumstance that St. Matthew ^ " st. jratt. 

' •' XT. SI 


JiOOK tells Tis, He ' withdrew ^ ^ thith(>r, while St. Mark notes that Ht= 
^^^ ' entered into an h<)U>t.', and would have no man know it/ TIi.'l t: 

house in which Jesus sought shelter and privacy would, of course, 
be a Jewish home ; and, that it was within the borders of Israel, i ^ 
further evidenced by the notice of St. Matthew, that * the Canaaniti&Tj 
woman ' who sought His help * came out from those borders ' — ths3fc,t 
is, from out the Tyro-Sidonian district — into that Galilean border 
where Jesus was. 

The whole circumstances seem to point to more than a night ''s 
rest in that distant home. Possibly, the two first Passover-days 
may have been spent here. If the Saviour had left Capernaum on tt^e 
Sabbath evening, or the Sunday morning, He may have reached thjsut 
home on the borders before the Paschal Eve, and the Monday 
Tuesday^ may have been the festive Paschal days, on which sacr- 
rest was enjoined. This would also give an adequate motive 
such a sojourn in that house, as seems required by the narrative 
St. Mark. According to that Evangelist, Jesus * would have 
man know ' His Presence in that place, ^ but He could not be hi 
Manifestly, this could not apply to the rest of one night in a boa; 
According to the same Evangelist, the fame of His Presence spread ii 
the neighbouring district of Tyre and Sidon,and reached the mother 
the demonised child, upon which she went from her home into Galil^" ^ 
to apply for help to Jesus. All this implies a stay of two or thre^^ 
days. And with this also agrees the after-complaint of the disciples — 
• St. :^r8tt. * Send her away, fer she crieth after us.' * As the Saviour apparent!;^** 
TL \. v received the woman in the house,^ it seems that she must haves^ 
Tii.24, 2ft followed some of the disciples, entreating their help or intercession 
in a manner that attracted the attention which, according to the 
will of Jesus, they would fain have avoided, before, in her despair, 
she ventured into the Presence of Christ within the house. 

All this resolves into a higher harmony those small seeming 
discrepancies, which negative criticism has tried to magnify into 
contradictions. It also adds graphic details to the story. She who 
now sought His help was, as St. Matthew calls her, from the Jewish 
ix. 1 standpoint, ^ a Canaanitish ® woman,' by which term a Jew would desig- 
nate a native of Phoenicia, or, as St. Mark calls her, a Syro-Phoenician 
(to distinguish her country from Lybo-Phoenicia), and ^a Greek ' — 
that is, a heathen. But, we can understand how she who, as Bengd 
says, made the misery of her little child her own, would, on hearing 
of the Christ and His mighty deeds, seek His help with the most 

• So correctly rendered. » Or, the Passover-eve may have been Monday evening. 


intrense earnestness, and that, in so doing, she would approtich Him chap. 
w^t.h lowliest reverence, falling at His Feet." But what in the eir- xxxiii^ 
cixmstances seems so peculiar, and, in our view, furnishes the expla- • st Mark 
nation of the Lord's bearing towards this woman, is her mode of 
addressing Him : * Lord, Thou Son of David ! ' This was the most 
distinctively Jewish appellation of the Messiah ; and yet it is 
emphatically stated of her, that she was a heathen. Tradition has 
preserved a few reported sayings of Christ, of which that about to • 

be quoted seems, at least, quite Christ-like. It is reported that, 
' having seen a man working on the Sabbath, He said : " man, if 
iiideed thou knowest what thou doest, thou art blessed ; but if thou 
knowest not, thou art cursed, and art a transgressor of the Law." ' * 
The same principle applied to the address of this woman — only that, 
in what followed, Christ imparted to her the knowledge needful to 
inake her blessed. 

Spoken by a heathen, these words were an appeal, not to the 

M^essiah of Israel, but to an Israelitish Messiah — for David had 

never reigned over her or her people. The title might be most 

^^Htfully used, if the promises to David were fully and spiritually 

apprehended — not otherwise. If used without that knowledge, it 

^'^^ an address by a stranger to a Jewish Messiah, Whose works were 

^^y miracles, and not also and primarily signs. Now this was 

^^actly the error of the Jews which Jesus had encoimtered and 

^^Oibated, alike when He resisted the attempt to make Him King, 

^^ His reply to the Jerusalem Scribes, and in His Discourses at 

^^pemaum. To have granted her the help she so entreated, would 

^Ve been, as it were, to reverse the whole of His Teaching, and to 

^^ke His works of healing merely works of power. For, it will not 

^ contended that this heathen woman had full spiritual knowledge 

^* the world-wide bearing of the Davidic promises, or of the world- 

^^hracing designation of the Messiah as the Son of David. In her 

^oiith, then, it meant something to which Christ could not have 

Welded. And yet He could not refuse her petition. And so He 

^^st taught her, in such manner as she could understand — that which 

^he needed to know, before she could approach Him in such manner — 

^^e relation of the heathen to the Jewish world, and of both to the 

'^^^ssiah, and then He gave her what she asked. 

It is this, we feel convinced, which explains all. It could not have 
^^n, that from His human standpoint He first kept silence. His 
^^p tenderness and sympathy forbidding Him to speak, while the 

* Ck)mp. Canon Wetteott, Introduction to the Study of the Gospels, Appendix C. 


liooK normal limitation of His ^Mission forbade Him to act as she sought.'* 
Ill J^uch limitation could not have existed in His mind ; nor can \vti£: 
sup2X)se such an utter separation of His Human from His Di\in^ 
consciousness in His Messianic acting. And we recoil from tk 
opposite explanation, which supposes Christ to have either tried th^^ 
faith of the woman, or else spoken with a view to drawing it ou^fc- 
We shrink from the idea of anything like an after-thought, even fc^r 
a good purpose, on the part of the Divine Saviour. All such aflear- 
thoughts are, to our thinking, incompatible with His Divine Piirifc.y 

and absolute rectitude. God does not make us good by a device ■ 

and that is a very wrong view of trials, or of delayed answers "fc>o 
prayer, which men sometimes take. Nor can we imagine, that ttm-e 
Lord would have made such cruel trial of the poor agonised wodmuib:!, 
or played on her feelings, when the issue would have been so una 
ably terrible, if in her weakness she had failed. There is no 
analogous in the case of this poor heathen coming to petition, 
being tried by being told that she could not be heard, because 
belonged to the dogs, not the children, and the trial of Abraham^ 
who was a hero of faith, and had long walked with God. In an^p^ 
case, on any of the views just combated, the Words of Jesus woulc^ 
bear a needless and inconceivable harshness, which grates on all oiu^ 
feelings concerning Him. The Lord does not afflict willingly, nor 
try needlessly, nor disguise His loving thoughts and purposes, in 
order to bring about some eflPect in us. He needs not such means ; 
and, with reverence be it said, we cannot believe that He ever uses 

But, viewed as the teaching of Christ to this heathen con- 
cerning Israel's Messiah, all becomes clear, even in the very brief 
reports of the Evangelists, of which that by St. Matthew reads 
like that of one present, that of St. Mark rather like that of one 
who relates what he has heard from another (St. Peter). She had 
spoken, but Jesus had answered her not a word. When the disciples 
— in some measure, probably, still sharing the views of this heathen, 
that He was the Jewish Messiah — without, indeed, interceding for 
her, asked that she might be sent away, because she was troublesome 
to them. He replied, that His Mission was only to the lost sheep of the 
house of Israel. This was absolutely true, as regarded His Work 

> This view is advocated by Dean first, in His calm limitation to His special 

Plwmptre with remarkable beauty, ten- mission, and then in His equally calm 

derness, and reverence. It is also that of oversteppiug of it, when a higher ground 

Meyer and of EnctUd. The latter remarks, for so doing appeared, 
that our Lord showed twofold greatness : 


'W'lxile upon earth ; and true, in every sense, as we keep in view the chap. 

^oxld-wide bearing of the Davidie reign and promises, and the xxxiii 
fi^^ rektion between Israel and the world. Thus baffled, as it might 
^^^^m, she cried no longer * Son of David,' but, * Lord, help me.' It 
^rskA then that the special teaching came in the manner she could 
cxnderetand. If it were as * the Son of David ' that He was entreated 
if the heathen woman as such applied to the Jewish Messiah as 

», what, in the Jewish view, were the heathens but ^ dogs,' and 
wliat would be fellowship with them, but to cast to the dogs — house- 
dLogs,* it may be — what should have been the children's bread? 
Ajod, certainly, no expression more common in the mouth of the Jews, 
tlxan that which designated the heathens as dogs.*^ Most harsh p^"<^®? 
»-s it was, as the outcome of national pride and Jewish self-asser- Meg. 7 b 
tion, yet in a sense it was true, that those within were the children, 
^^d those * without ' * dogs.' ^ Only, who were they within and who » Rev. xxii. 
they without? What made *a child,' whose was the bread — and 
^hat characterised * the dog,' that was * without ' ? 

Two lessons did she learn with that instinct-like rapidity which 

^^'^rist's personal Presence — and it alone — seemed ever and again to 

^U forth, just as the fire which fell from heaven consumed the 

®^rifice of Elijah. ^ Yea, Lord,' it is as Thou sayest : heathenism 

stands related to Judaism as the house-dogs to the children, and it 

^^3*e not meet to rob the children of their bread in order to give it 

^^ dogs. But Thine own words show, that such would not now be 

^he case. If they are house-dogs, then they are the Master's, and 

^^der His table, and when He breaks the bread to the children, in 

*^^ breaking of it the crumbs must fall all aroimd. As St. Matthew 

'^^ts it : * The dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their Master's 

^ble ; ' as St. Mark puts it : * The dogs under the table eat of the 

^^Idren's crumbs.' Both versions present diflferent aspects of the 

^?^e truth. Heathenism may be like the dogs, when compared with 

^^ children's place and privileges; but He is their Master still, 

^d they under His table ; and when He breaks the bread there is 

^oiigh and to spare for them — even under the table they eat of the 

'^^Idren's crnmbs. 

But in so saying she was no longer * under the table,' but had 
^^^ down at the table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and was par- 
^ter of the children's bread. He was no longer to her the Jewish 

^ • The term means * little dogs/ or similar, or based on this view of Gcn- 
^^J'Use-dogs.' tiles. 

Many passages might be quoted either 


HOOK ]\Iessiali, but truly 'the Son of David.' Slie now understood wha^ 
in she prayed, and she iras a daughtt'r of Abraham. And what ha^l 

' ' taught her all this was faith in His Person and Work, as not ouW^ 

just enough for the Jews, but enough and to spare for all — children 
at the table and dogs under it ; that in and with Abraham, Isaax?, 
Jacob, and David, all nations were blessed in Israel's King and 
Messiah. And so it was, that the Lord said it : ^ O woman, great is 
thy faith : be it done unto thee even as thou wilt.' Or, as St. Mark 
puts it, not quoting the very sound of the Lord's words, but their 
impression upon Peter : * For this saying go thy way ; the devil i* 
gone out of thy daughter.' ^ * And her daughter was healed fix>xa 

• st^ffttt. that hour.'* * And she went away unto her house, and found txer 
daughter prostrate [indeed] upon the bed, and [but] the demon gaxie 

To us there is in this history even more than the solemn interest 
of Christ's compassion and mighty Messianic working, or the lessoxis 
of His teaching. We view it in connection with the scenes of \A^^ 
previous few days, and see how thoroughly it accords with them, i^ 
spirit, thus recognising the deep internal unity of Christ's Worc^-^ 
and Works, where least, perhaps, we might have looked for suc^-*^ 
harmony. And again we view it in its deeper bearing upon, an. 
lessons to, all times. To how many, not only of all nations and co 

ditions, but in all states of heart and mind, nay, in the very lowest 

depths of conscious guilt and alienation from God, must thi; 
have brought unspeakable comfort, the comfort of truth, and th^^ 
comfort of His Teaching. Be it so, an outcast, ^ dog ; ' not at th^^ 
table, but under the table. Still we are at His Feet ; it is our^ 
Master's Table ; He is our Master ; and, as He breaks the children'^ 
bread, it is of necessity that * the children's crumbs ' fall to xis — - 
enough, quite enough, and to spare. Never can we be outside Hi^ 
reach, nor of that of His gracious care, and of sufficient provision 
to eternal life. 

Yet this lesson also must we learn, that as * heathens ' we may 
not call on Him as * David's Son,' till we know why we so call Him. 
If there can be no despair, no being cast out by Him, no absolute 
distance that hopelessly separates from His Person and Provision, 
there must be no presumption, no forgetfulness of the right relation, no 
expectancy of magic-miracles, no viewing Christ as a Jewish Messiah. 

' Canon Coo% (Speaker*s Comm. on St. With all deference, I venture to think it 

Mark vii. 29) regai^ this ' as one of the is not so, but that St. Mark gives what 

very few instances in which our Lord's St. Peter had received as the impression 

words really differ in the two accounts.' of Christ's words on his mind. 



We must learn it, and painfully, first by His silence, then by this, 
that He is only sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, what 
we are and where we are — that we maybe prepared for the grace of God 
and the gift of grace. All men — Jews and Gentiles, * children ' and 
* dogs' — are as before Christ and God equally undeserving and equally 
siimere ; but those who have fallen deep can only learn that they are 
aiinere by learning that they are great sinners, and will only taste of 
the children's bread when they have felt, * Yea, Lord,' * for even the 
dogs' 'under the table eat of the children's crumbs,' * which fall from 
their Master's table.' 





(St. Matt. XV. 29-31 ; St. Mark vii. 31-37 ; St. Mark viu. 22-26 ; St. Matt. xi. 27-31.) 

BOOK If even the brief stay of Jesus in that friendly Jewish home by tbe 
III borders of Tyre could not remain unknown, the {ame of the healing 

■ ' ' of the Syro-Phoenician maiden would soon have rendered impossible 
that privacy and retirement, which had been the chief object of Hi* 
leaving Capernaum. Accordingly, when the two Paschal days vreT'^ 
ended, He resumed His journey, extending it far beyond any pr^^ 
viously imdertaken, perhaps beyond what had been originally iC^' 
tended. The borders of Palestine proper, though not of what tt^^^ 
Kabbis reckoned as belonging to it,* were passed. Making a loi»<^ 
circuit through the territory of Sidon,^ He descended — probabL-^ 
through one of the passes of the Hermon range — into the country c:^! 
the Tetrarch Philip. Thence He continued * through the midst C^ 
the borders of Decapolis,' till He once more reached the eastern, o^^ 
south-eastern, shore of the Lake of Galilee. It will be remembere^^ 
that the Decapolis, or confederacy of * the Ten Cities,' ' was wedged 
in between the Tetrarchies of Philip and Antipas. It embraced tef^ 
cities, although that was not always their number, and their name^ 
are variously enumerated. Of these cities Hippos, on the south* 
eastern shore of the Lake, was the most northern, and Philadelphia^ 
the ancient Eabbath-Ammon, the most southern. Scythopolis, the 
ancient Beth-Shean, with its district, was the only one of them on 
the western bank of the Jordan. This extensive *Ten Cities' 
district was essentially heathen territory. Their ancient monuments 
show, in which of them Zeus, Astarte, and Athene, or else Artemis, 

* For the Rabbinic views of tbe boun- Saviour's roatc, but (with Ewald and 
daries of Palestine see * Sketches of Lange) the territory of Sidon. 

Jewish Social Life/ ch. ii. » The fullest notice of the * Ten Citwe' 

* The correct reading of St. Mark vii. is that of Catpari^ Chronolog. Geogr. 
31, is * through Sidon.' By the latter I Einl. pp. S3-91, with which coxnpaic 
do not understand the town of that name, Menkes Bibel- Atlas, Map V. 

which would have been quite outside the 


Hercules, Dionysos, Demeter, or other Grecian divinities, were wor- chap. 
sMpped.* Their political constitution was that of the free Greek xxxiv 
cities. They were subject only to the Governor of Syria, and formed ' ^ 

part of Coele-Syria, in contradistinction to Syro-Phoenicia. This pri- 
vilege dated from the time of Pompey, from which also they after- 
w^tids reckoned their era. 

It is important to keep in view that, although Jesus was now 
vitiin the territory of ancient Israel, the district and all the 
surroundings were essentially heathen, although in closest proximity 
to, and intermingling with, that which was purely Jewish. St. Mat- 
thew' gives only a general description of Christ's activity there, ^st. Matt. 
concluding with a notice of the impression produced on those who 
witnessed His mighty deeds, as leading them to * glorify the God of 
Israel.' This, of course, confirms the impression that the scene 
is laid among a population chiefly heathen, and agrees with the 
more minute notice of the locality in the Gospel of St. Mark. One 
special instance of miraculous healing is recorded in the latter, 
not only from its intrinsic interest, but perhaps, also, as in some 
respects typical. 

Among those brought to Him was one deaf, whose speech had, 
probably in consequence of this, been so affected as practically to 
deprive him of its power.* This circumstance, and that he is not 
spoken of as so afflicted from his birth, leads us to infer that the 
affection was — as not unfrequently — ^the result of disease, and not 
genital. Eemembering, that alike the subject of the miracle 
^d they who brought him were heathens, but in constant and close 
^tact with Jews, what follows is vividly true to life. The entreaty 
^* lay His Hand upon him' is heathen, and yet semi-Jewish also. 
Qtite peculiar it is, when the Lord took him aside from the multitude ; 
^d again that, in healing him, * He spat,' applying it directly to the 
diseased organ. We read of the direct application of saliva only here 
^d in the healings of the blind man at Bethsaida.^ ' We are disposed >• st. Mark 
to regard this as peculiar to the healing of Gentiles. Peculiar, also, 
13 the term expressive of burden on the mind, when, * looking up to 
t^ven. He sighed.'* Peculiar, also, is the * thrusting'^ of His 

' Comp. Schurer, pp. 382, 383. • In St. John ix. 6 it is really applica- 

'Mytxkxof or fjMyyt\d\os does not mean tion of clay. 

2* »b8oliiteljr dumb. It is literally : * ffreyd(w occurs only here in the 

wuftw- loqueru. The Rabbinic desig- Gospels. Otherwise it occurs in Rom. 

^""^ of fuch a person would have been viii. 23 ; 2 Cor. v. 2, 4 ; Hebr. xiii. 17 ; 

^^f»«»i (Ther. i. 2), although different James v. 9 ; the substantive in Acts vii, 

?Pii^umfl obtain as to whether the term 34 ; Rom. viii. 26. 

^^^^Qdes Impediment of speech (comp. * So literally. 
%ii.4; Gitt. 71a). 




• Shabb. 
108 6; 
rtinp, H. N. 
xxviii. 7 : 
/iutt. Vesp. 7 

Fingers into the man's ears, and the touch of his tongue. O 
the upward look to heaven, and the command ^Ephphatha' — * 
opened ' — seem- the same as in His every day wonders of healing. ] 
we mark that all here seems much more elaborate than in Israel. T 
reason of this must, of course, be sought in the moral conditi 
of the person healed. Certain characteristics about the action of t 
Lord may, perhaps, help us to understand it better. There is an ace 
mulation of means, yet each and all inadequate to effect the purpos 
but all connected with His Person. This elaborate use of such meai 
would banish the idea of magic ; it would arouse the attention, an 
fix it upon Christ, as using these means, which were all connected wit 
His Person ; while, lastly, the sighing, and the word of absolut 
command, would all have here their special significance. 

Let us try to realise the scene. They have heard of Him as tl 
wonder-worker, these heathens in the land so near to, and yet i 
far from, Israel ; and they have brought to Him ' the lame, bliiM 
dumb, maimed,* and many others,' and laid them at His Feet. 01 
what wonder ! All disease vanishes in presence of Heaven's Own lii 
Incarnate. Tongues long weighted are loosed, limbs maimed or bei 
by disease * are restored to health ; the lame are stretched straigW 
the film of disease and the paralysis of nerve-impotence pass firoi 
eyes long insensible to the light. It is a new era — Israel conqnei 
the heathen world, not by force, but by love ; not by outward mean 
but by the manifestation of life-power from above. Truly, this 
the Messianic conquest and reign : * and they glorified the Gc 
of Israel.' 

From amongst this mass of misery we single out and follow on< 
whom the Saviour takes aside, that it may not be merely the breat 
of heaven's spring passing over them all, that wooeth him to ne 
life, but that He may touch and handle bim, and so give health 1 
soul and body. The man is to be alone with Christ and the disciple 
It is not magic ; means are used, and such as might not seem whol 
strange to the man. And quite a number of means ! He thrust H 
Fingers into his deaf ears, as if to make a way for the soimd; B 
spat on his tongue, .using a means of healing accepted in popoL 
opinion of Jew and Gentile ; * ^ He touched his tongue. Each a 

* KvXX^f means here incurvatus, and 
not as in ix. 43 mvtilatus. 

« Wiimche (ad loc.) is guilty of seri- 
ous misapprehension when he says that 
the Talmud condemns to eternal punish- 
ment those who employ this mode of 
healing. This statement is incorrect. 

What it condemns is the whispering 
magical formulas over a wound (8ai 
90 a\ when it was the custom of soi 
magicians to spit hefore (Sanh. 101 «), 
others after pronouncing the formi 
( Jer. Sanh. 28 ft). There is no analo 
whatever between this and what c 


seemed a fcesix incitement to his faith — and all connected itself with ci 
the Person of Christ. As yet there was not breath of life in it all, x: 
Bot when the man's eyea followed those of the Saviour to heaven, he 
would understand whence He expected, whence came to Him the 
power— Who had sent Him, and Whose He was. And as he followed 
the movement of Christ's lips, as He groaned under the felt burden 
He bad come to remove, the sufferer would look up expectant. 
Once more the Saviour's lips parted to speak the word of command : 
' Be opened ' — and straightway the gladsome sound would pass into 
Us ' bearing,' ' and the bond that eeemed to have held his tongue 
"K loosed. He was in a new world, into which He had put him 
ttitliad spoken that one Word ; He, Who had been burdened under 
the load which He had lifted up to His Father ; to Whom all the 
means that had been used had pointed, and with Whose Person they 
hadheen connected. 

It was in vain to enjoin silence. Wilder and wider spread the 
Mbidden &me, till it was caught np in this one hymn of praise, 
which has remained to alltimethe jubilee of our experience of Christ 
M the Divine Healer : ' He hath done all things well — He maketh 
even the deaf to hear, and the dumb to speak.' This Jewish word, 
^phpkatha, spoken to the Gentile Church by Him, Who, looking up 
to hearen, sighed under the burden, even while He uplifted it, has 
opened the hearing and loosed the bond of speech. Most significantly 
"W it spoken in the language of the Jews ; and this also does it 
^h, that Jesus must always have spoken the Jews' language. For, 
if ever, to a Grecian in Grecian territory would He have spoken in 
Greek, not in the Jews' language, if the former and not the latter 
^ been that of which He made use in His Words and Works. 

2. Another miracle is recorded by St. Mark,* as wrought by •» 
Jesus in these parts, and, as we infer, on a heathen.' All the circum- "" 
stances are kindred to those just related. It was in Bethsaida-Julias, 
wat one blind was brought unto Him, with the entreaty that He 

fori did, and the use of saliva for cores vcr. 22 must refer to the district, in one of 

"""ivermlly recognised by tiie Rabbia, thehamletB of which the blind man met 

' 80 liteiily, or rather ' healings ' — in Jesus. It does not appear, that, Jesus 

iwjiliiial. ever again wrought miracles either in 

' Voat commcDtaton regard this as Capernaum or the western Bcthsaida, if, 

"* eatUrn Betfasaida, or Bethsaida- indeed, He ever retomed to that district. 

-!°Uta. The objection (in the Speaker's Lastly, Ihe scene of that miiucle most 

l^^nmitQtary), that the text speaks of have been the eastern Bethsaidn (Julias), 

'*<illage' (vv. 23,26) is obviated by the since immediately afterwards the con- 

^'nimiiance that immcdiat«ly afterwards tinuance of His journey to Ctesarea 

•» lead (ver. 27) about the ■ villages Philippi is related without any notice of 

'^ Ccsarea I'hilippi.' The Bethaaida of crossing the Lahe. 



• Jer. 

Shabb. xlv. 
4 ; Baba It. 
1S6 6 

* Jer. Sot. 
16 df about 
the middle 


St. Mark 

< rer. S< 

• St. Matt, 
ix. 27-31 

would touch him, — just as in the case of the deaf and dumb. Here 
also, the Saviour took him aside — * led him out of the village ' — and 
* spat on his eyes, and put His Hands upon him.' We mark not onlj 
the similarity of the means employed, but the same, and eves 
greater elaborateness in the use of them, since a twofold touch » 
recorded before the man saw clearly.* On any theory-*-even tbal 
which would regard the Gospel-narratives as spurious — this toot 
must have been intended to mark a special purpose, since this is the 
only instance in which a miraculous cure was performed gradually, 
and not at once and completely. So far as we can judge, the object 
was, by a gradual process of healing, to disabuse the man of any 
idea of magical cure, while at the same time the process of healing 
again markedly centred in the Person of Jesus. With this abe 
agrees (as in the case of the deaf and dumb) the use of spittle in 
the healing. We may here recall, that the use of saliva was a well- 
known Jewish remedy for affections of the eyes.* It was thus that 
the celebrated Rabbi Meir relieved one of his fair hearers, when her 
husband, in his anger at her long detention by the Rabbi's sermons, 
had ordered her to spit in the preacher's face. Pretending to suflfer 
from his eyes, the Rabbi contrived that the woman publicly spat in 
his eyes, thus enabling her to obey her husband's command.^ Th® 
anecdote at least proves, that the application of saliva was popularly 
regarded as a remedy for affections of the eyes. 

Thus in this instance also, as in that of the deaf and dumb, thei 
was the use of means, Jewish means, means manifestly insufficiei 
(since their first application was only partially successful), and of 
multiplication of means — yet all centering in, and proceeding fro* 
His Person. As further analogies between the two, we mark t) 
the blindness does not seem to have been congenital,® but the c 
sequence of disease ; and that silence was enjoined after the heali^ 
Lastly, the confusedness of his sight, when first restored to I 
surely conveyed, not only to him but to us all, both a spiritual le 
and a spiritual warning. 

3. Yet a third miracle of healing requires to be here consid 
although related by St. Matthew in quite another connection.* 
we have learned enough of the structure of the First Gos 
know, that its arrangement is determined by the plan of the 
rather than by the chronological succession of events.^ The r 

* The better reading of the words is 
given in the Revised Version. 
' Thus, the healing recorded imme- 

diately after this history, in St. 
32-36) belongs evidently to 
period. Comp. St. Luke xi. 14 


Q which the Lord healed the two blind men, the injunction of chap. 
ilence, and the notice that none the less they spread His fame in xx xiv 
Ul that landf^ seem to imply that He was not on the ordinary scene 
>f His labours in Galilee. Nor can we fail to mark an internal 
analc^ between this and the other two miracles enacted amidst a 
chiefly Grecian population. And, strange though it may sound, the 
cry with which the two blind men who sought his help followed Him, 
' Son of David, have mercy on us,' comes, as might be expected, more 
frequently from Gentile than from Jewish lips. It was, of course, 
pre-eminently the Jewish designation of the Messiah, the basis of all 
Jewish thought of Him. But, perhaps on that very ground, it would 
express in Israel rather the homage of popular conviction, than, as in 
this case, the cry for help in bodily disease. Besides, Jesus had not 
as yet been hailed as the Messiah, except by His most intimate dis- 
ciples; and, even by them, chiefly in the joy of their highest spiritual 
attamments. He was the Rabbi, Teacher, Wonder-worker, Son of 
Man, even Son of God; but the idea of the Davidic Kingdom as 
implying spiritual and Divine, not outwardly royal rule, lay as yet 
on the utmost edge of the horizon, covered by the golden mist of 
the Sun of Eighteousness in His rising. On the other hand, we can 
^derstand, how to Gentiles, who resided in Palestine, the Messiah of 
Ifflael would chiefly stand out as * the Son of David.' It was the 
Diost ready, and, at the same time, the most universal, form in which 
the great Jewish hope could be viewed by them. It presented to 
their minds the most marked contrast to Israel's present fallen state, 
^d it recalled the Golden Age of Israel's past, and that, as only the 
^bol of a far wider and more glorious reign, the fulfilment of what 
^ David had only been promises.^ 

Peculiar to this history is the testing question of Christ, whether 
^cy really believed what their petition implied, that He was able to 
'^ore their sight ; and, again. His stem, almost passionate, insistr- 
^Dce' on their silence as to the mode of their cure. Only on one 
^er occasion do we read of the same insistence. It is, when the 
leper had expressed the same absolute faith in Christ's ability to 

* I admit that especially the latter blind men near Jericho (St. Matt. xx. 
^'punent is inconclusive, but I appeal 30, 31 ; St. Mark x. 47, 48 ; St. Luke 
^the general context and the setting xviii. 38, 39), and proclaimed as such 
<rf this history. It is impossible to regard by the people in St. Matt. xii. 23 ; xxi. 
^ Matt. ix. as a chronological record of 9, 16. 

wtnta. • ififipifjidiofuu — the word occurs in that 

* He is addreued as • Son of David,' in sense only hero and in St. Mark i. 43 ; 
thii passage, by the Syro-PhcEnician othen\'i8e also in St. Mark xiv. 6, and 
^WUn (St. Matt. XV. 22), and by the in St. John xi. 33, 38. 

VOL. n. E 


heal if He willed it, and Jesaa had, as in the case of these tvo blind 
men, conferred the benefit by the touch of His Hand,' In both these 
r cases, it is remarkable that, along with strongest feith of those who 
came to Him, there was rather an implied than an expressed petition 
on their part. The leper who knelt before Him only said : ' Lord, if 
Thou wilt. Thou canst make me clean;' and the two blind men: 
' Have merey on ua, Thou Son of Da\-id.' Thns it is the highest 
and most reahsing faith, which is most absolute in its trust and most 
reticent as regards the details of its request. 

But as regards the two blind men (and the healed leper also), it 
is almost impossible not to connect Christ's peculiar insistence on 
their silence with their advanced faith. They had owned Jesas as ' 
' the Son of David,' and that, not in the Judaic sense (as by the 
Syro-Phcenician woman '), but as able to do all things, even to opea 
by His touch the eyes of the blind. And it had been done to them, 
as it always Is — according to their faith. But a profession of faifJi 
so wide-reaching as theirs, and sealed by the attainment of what it 
sought, yet scarcely dared to ask, must not be publicly proclaimed!. 
It would, and in point of fact did, bring to Him crowds which, un- 
able spiritually to understand the meaning of such a confession, would 
only embarrass and hinder, and whose presence and homage woiild 
. have to be avoided as much, if not more, than that of oj)en enemies.^ 
For confession of the mouth must ever be the outcome of heart- 
belief, and the acclamations of an excited Jewish crowd were as in- 
congruous to the real Character of the Christ, and as obstructive to 
the progress of His Kingdom, as is the outward homage of a world 
which has not heart-belief in His Power, nor heart-experience of Hia 
ability and willingness to cleanse the leper and to open the eyes oT"' 
the blind. Yet the leprosy of Ismel and the blindness of the Gentile 
world are equally removed by the touch of His Hand at the cry of" 
faith. I 

The question has been needlessly discussed,' whether they were 
to praise or blame, who, despite the Saviour's words, spread His &me. I 
We scarcely know what, or how much, they disobeyed. They conld I 
not but qieak of His Person ; and theirs was, perhaps, not yet that I 
higher silence which is content simply to sit at His Feet. i 

' It shoiili! be borne in mind, that the 
country, «Drroundings, &c., place these 
men in a. lottJ difiereat category from 
tbe Sjro-Phcrnioiun woman. 

< Roman Catholic wril 
praise, while Protestants t 

me, ^^^ 



"•*: TITOB 

Tbe disciples, and the I 

(8t. Matt. lii. 1-21 j St. Mark ii. 23— iji. 6 ; St. Luke vi. I_1I.) 

^ groaping together the three miracles of healing described in the chap. 

l**t chapter, we do not wish to convey it as certain that they had xxxv 

t»ten place in precisely that order. Nor do we feel sure, that they ' ' 

preceded what is about to be related. In the absence of exact data, 

the Bnccession of events and their location must be matter of 

coxnbination. From their position in the Evangelic narrativee, and 

the maimer in which all concerned speak and act, we inferred, that they 

^k place at that particular period and east of the Jordan, in the 

fecapolis or else in the territory of Philip. They differ from 

^e events about to be related by the absence of the Jerusalem 

^**ibeB, who hung on the footsteps of Jesus. While the Saviour 

'"Tied on the borders of Tyre, and thence passed through the teiri- 

**fy of Sidon into the Decapolis and to the southern and eastern 

*^ore8 of the Lake of Galilee, they were in Jerusalem at the Passover. 

"Qt after the two festive days, which would require their attendance 

^B the Temple, they seem to have returned to their hateful task. It 

*ould not be difficult for them to discover the scene of such mighty 

*orks as His. Accordingly, we now find them once more confront- 

'^ Chiist, And the events about to be related are chronologically 

Qistjngnished from those that had preceded, by this presence and 

^position of the Pharisaic party. The contest now becomes more 

beaded and sharp, and we are rapidly neanng the period when He, 

"bo had hitherto been chiefly preaching the Kingdom and healing 

•^dy and soul, will, through the hostility of the leaders of Israel, 

enler on the second, or prevailingly negative stage of His Work, in 

'hich,accordingtothe prophetic description, * they compassed ' Him 

'tbont like bees,' but ' are quenched as the fire of thorns.' 

Where fundamental principles were so directly contrary, the 

a for conflict could not be long wanting. Indeed, all that Jesu^ 
tiioght must have seemed to these Pharisees strangely im-Jewieh in 
cast and direction, even if not in form and words. But chiefly would 
this be the case in regard to that on which, of all else, the Pharigees 
laid most stress, the observance of the Habbath. On no other subject 
ia Rabbinic teaching more painfully minute and more manifestly in- 
congruous to its professed object. For, if we rightly apprehend what 
underlay ihe complicated and intolerably burdensome laws and rules 
of Pharisaic Sabbath-observance, it was to secure, negatively, abso- 
lute rest from all labour, and, positively, to make the Sabbath 
a delight. The Mishnah includes Sabbath-desecration among those 
1 most heinous crimes for which a man was to be stoned.* This, then, 
was their first care, to make a breach of the Sabbath-rest imposdble. 
How far this was carried, we shall presently see. The next object 
was, in a similarly external manner, to make the Sabbath a delight. 
A special Sabbath dress, the best that could be procured ; the choicest 
food, even though a man had to work for it all the week, or publie 
charity were to supply it*" — ^such were some of the means by whicji 
the day was to be honoured and men were to find pleasure therein. 
The strangest stories are told, how, by the purchase of the most 
expensive dishes, the pious poor had gained unspeakable merit, »m^ 
obtained, even on earth, Heaven's manifest reward. And yet, by the 
side of these and similar strange and wid misdirections of piety, we 
come also upon that which is touching, beautiful, and even spiritual. 
On the Sabbath there must be no mourning, for to the Sabbath 
applies this saying : " ' The blessing of the Lord, it maketh rich, and 
He addeth no sorrow with it.' Quite alone was the Sabbath amon^ 
the measures of time. Every other day had been paired with its 
fellow : not so the Sabbath. And so any festival, even the Day of 
Atonement, might be transferred to another day : not so the otMer— 
vanee of the Sabbath. Nay, when the Sabbatli complained before 
God, that of all days it alone sfoijd solitary, God had wedded it to 
Israel; and this holy union God had bidden His people 'remember,"' 
when it stood before the Mount. Even tlie tortures of Gehenna were 
intermitted on that holy, happy day.' 

The terribly exaggerated views on the Sabbath entertained by 
the Rabbis, and the endless burdensome rules with which they 
encumbered everything connected with its sanctity, are fully set 
forth iu another place.' The Jewish Law, as there summarised, 
sufficiently explains the controversies in which the Pharisaic partr 

■ Sec Appendix XVIL : Tbe OrdinnDCCs and Law of the 



ao^w engaged with Jesus. Of these the first was when, going chap. 
tturongh the cornfields on the Sabbath, His disciples began to pluck xxxv 
a»xi<i eat the ears of com. Not, indeed, that this was the first ' 
Sabbath-controversy forced upon Christ.* But it was the first time g^^JJ^ ^ 
tliat Jesus allowed, and afterwards Himself did, in presence of the 9. i^ 
I^harisees, what was contrary to Jewish notions, and that, in express 
^^^d unmistakable terms. He vindicated His position in regard to 
^l^e Sabbath. This also indicates that we have now reached a further 
®^iage in the history of our Lord's teaching. 

This, however, is not the only reason for placing this event so 
late in the personal history of Christ. St. Matthew inserts it at 
a different period firom the other two Synoptists ; and, although 
St* Mark and St. Luke introduce it amidst the same surroundings, 
the connection, in which it is told in all the three Gospels, shows that 
It is placed out of the historical order, and in order to group together 
^Hat would exhibit Christ's relation to the Pharisees and their teach- 


^^S« Accordingly, this first Sabbath-controversy is immediately 
followed by that connected with the healing of the man with the 
Ottered hand. From St. Matthew and St. Mark it might, indeed, 
^Pl>€ar as if this had occurred on the same day as the plucking of the 
6*i^ of com, but St. Luke corrects any possible misunderstanding, 
V telling us that it happened * on another Sabbath ' — perhaps that 
following the walk through the cornfields. 

Dismissing the idea of inferring the precise time of these two 
^^^Tits from their place in the Evangelic record, we have not much 
diflSculty in finding the needful historical data for our present inquiry, 
^e first and most obvious is, that the harvest was still standing — 
^tether that of barley or of wheat. The former began inmiediately 
^ft^T the Passover, the latter after the Feast of Pentecost ; the pre- 
sentation of the wave-omer of barley marking the beginning of the 
^^e, that 'of the two wave-loaves that of the other.* Here another 
historical notice comes to our aid. St. Luke describes the Sabbath 
^f this occurrence as Hhe second-first' — an expression so peculiar 
^^t it cannot be regarded as an interpolation,^ but as designedly 
^aosen by the Evangelist to indicate something well understood in 
Palestine' at the time. Bearing in mind the limited number of 
Sabbaths between the commencement of the barley- and the end of 
fte wheat-harvest, our inquiry is here much narrowed. In Eabbi- 
^ writings the term * second-first ' is not applied to any Sabbath. 

Comp. « The Temple and its Services/ ' The great majority of critics are 

R>- 222, 226, 230, 231. agreed as to its authenticity. 



BOOK But we know that the fifty days between the Feast of Passover and 

m that of Pentecost were reckoned from the presentation of the wave- 

omer on the Second Paschal Day, as the first, second, third day, &c. 

after the ' Omer.' Thus the * second-first ' Sabbath might be either 

* the first Sabbath after the second day,' which was that of the pre- 
sentation of the Omer, or else the second Sabbath after this the first 
day of reckoning, or * Sephirah,' as it was called (npyn HTDd)* To us 
the first of these dates seems most in accord with the manner in 
which St. Luke would describe to Gentile readers the Sabbath which 
was * the first after the second,' or, Sephirath-day.^ 

Assuming, then, that it was probably the first — ^possibly, the 
second — Sabbath after the * reckoning,' or second Paschal Day, on 
which the disciples plucked the ears of corn, we have still to ascer- 
tain whether it was in the first or second Passover- of Christ's 
Ministry.^ The reasons against placing it between the first Passover 
and Pentecost are of the strongest character. Not to speak of the 
circumstance that such advanced teaching on the part of Christ, and 
such advanced knowledge on the part of His disciples, indicate a 
later period, our Lord did not call His twelve Apostles till long 
after the Feast of Pentecost, viz. after His return firom the so-called 
* St. John V. < Unknown Feast,' * which, as shown in another place,' must have 
been either that of ' Wood-Gathering,' in the end of the summer, or 
else New Year's Day, in the beginning of autumn. Thus, as by 

* the disciples ' we must in this connection understand, in the first 
place, * the Apostles,' the event could not have occurred between the 
first Passover and Pentecost of the Lord's Ministry. 

The same result is reached by another process of reasoning. 

fc^st-joiinii. After the first Passover ** our Lord, with such of His disciples as had 

then gathered to Him, tarried for some time — no doubt for several 

weeks — in Judaea.® The wheat was ripe for harvesting, when He 

f?t, John 
iii. v2 : 
T. 1-3 

* The view which I have adopted is 
that of Scanner and Lightfoot ; the alter- 
native one mentioned, that of 2>^/ifr«cA. 
In regard to the many other explanations 
propped, I would lay down this canon : 
No explanation can be satisfactory which 
rests not on some ascertained fact in 
Jewish life, and where the fact is ' sup- 
posed ' for the sake of the explanation. 
Thus, there is not the slightest support 
in fact for the idea, that the first Sabbath 
of the second month was so called ( Wet- 
stdn^ Speaker's Ck>mmentary), or the first 
SablMtth in the second year of a septen- 
nial pycle, or the Sabbath of the Nisan 

(the sacred) year, in contradistinction 
to the Tishri or secular year, which 
began in autumn. Of these and similar 
interpretations it is enough to say, that 
the underlying fact is * supposed ' for the 
sake of a ' supposed * explanation ; in 
other words, they embody a hypoth< 
based on a hypothesis. 

* There were only three Paschal 
during the public ministry of Christ. 
Any other computation rests on the 
idea that the Unknown Feast was the 
PasBover, or even the Feast of Esther. 

» Comp. Appendix XV. 


passed through Samaria.* And, on His return to Galilee, His dis- chap. 
ciples seem to have gone back to their homes and occupations, since xxxv 
it was some time afterwards that even His most intimate disciples — •st.johiT 
Peter, Andrew, James, and John — were called a second time.** Chro- Jg^ ^^^^ 
Bologicallj, therefore, there is no room for this event between the ^^- ^^*^ 
first Passover and Pentecost.' Lastly, we have here to bear in mind, 
that, on His first appearance in Galilee, the Pharisees had not yet 
taken up this position of determined hostility to Him. On the other 
hand, all agrees with the circumstance, that the active hostility of 
the Pharisees and Christ's separation firom the ordinances of the 
Synagogue commenced with His visit to Jerusalem in the early 
autumn of that year.® If, therefore, we have to place the plucking • st joim r. 
of the ears of com after the Feast recorded in St. John v., as can 
Wffody be doubted, it must have taken place, not between the 
fint, but between the Second Passover and Pentecost of Christ's 
pubBc Ministry. 

ABother point deserves notice. The diflferent * setting ' (chrono- 
^ically speaking) in which the three Gospels present the event 
about to be related, illustrates that the object of the Evangelists 
VM to present the events in the History of the Christ in their 
^Qooeggion, not of time, but of bearing upon final results. This, 
o^caxm they do not attempt a Biography of Jesus, which, from their 
point of view, would have been almost blasphemy, but a History of 
we Kingdom which He brought ; and because they write it, so to 
'peak, not by adjectives (expressive of qualities), nor adverbially,^ but 
by substantives. I-astly, it will be noted that the three Evangelists 
'elate the event about to be considered (as so many others), not, 
^deed, with variations,^ but with diflferences of detail, showing the 
^^pendence of their narratives, which, as we shall see, really sup- 
plement each other. 

We are now in a position to examine the narrative itself. It was 
on the Sabbath after the Second Paschal Day that Christ and His 
^ples passed * — probably by a field-path — through cornfields, when 

* Few would be disposed to place St. who attribute the plucking of the ears to 
J^ xii before St. Matt. iv. hunger. Canon Cook (Speaker's CJom- 

* Adverbs answer to the questions, mentary, New Testament i. p. 216) has, to 
^t When, Why, Where. my mind, conclusively shown the untena- 

' Meifer insists that the S^hv iroicii', or bleness of Meyer's contention. He com- 

■*»e correctly, ^^owouiv (St. Mark ii. 23) pares the expression of St. Mark to the 

*onld be translated literally, that the Latin • iter facere' I would suggest the 

^iKiples began to make a way by pluck- French ' eKemin faitant.* Oodet points 

% the ears of com. Accordingly, he out the absurdity of plucking up ears in 

*«nta1nn, that there is an essential differ- order to make a way through the com. 
«ioe between the aocount of St. Mark * In St. Mark also the better reading 

4Bd those of the two other Evangelists, is Sunropf^cof cu. 


HOUK His disciples, being hungry,* as they went,'' plucked ears of com 

m and ate them, having rubbed off the husks in their hands.' On any 

• St Mat- ordinary day this would have been lawful,'' but on the Sabbath it 
J'T^ involved, according to Rabbinic statutes, at least two sins. For, 
■ BtLok- according to the Talmud, what was really one labour, would, if made- 

• Dont.Diii. up of several acts, each of them forbidden, amount to several acts of 
•Btabb.To.i labour, each involving sin, punishment, and a sin-offering/' This- 

so-called ' division ' of labour applied only to infringement of the 

• M.CC.JW. Sabbath-rest — not of that of feast-days/ Now in this ease there 

were at least two such acts involved : that of plucking the ears of 

com, ranged under the sin of reaping, and that of rubbing them, 

which might be ranged under sifting in a sieve, threshing, sifting 

out fruit, grinding, or fanning. The following Talmudic passage 

bears on this: 'In case a woman rolls wheat to remove the husks, it 

is considered as sifting; if she rubs the heads of wheat, it is 

i-egarded as threshing ; if she cleans off the side-ad herences, it is 

sifting out fruit ; if she bruises the ears, it is grinding ; if she 

shubk throws them up in her hand, it is winnowing.'" One instance will 

SdmJsio 'G ^'^*^^ *** show the extemalism of all these ordinances. If a man 

inim bottom wished to movc a sheaf on his field, which of course implied labonr, 

he ha<I only to lay npon it a spoon that was in his common use, when, 

in order to remove the siwon, he might also remove the sheaf on 

i«?'i^ni^s which it hiy!'' And yet it was forbidden Uj stop with a little wax 

from toihiiii the hole in a cask by which the fluid was running out,' or to wipe 

lu*''"' a wound ! 

Holding views like these, the Pharisees, who witnessed the 
conduct of the disciples, would naturally harshly condemn, what they 
must have regarded as gross desecration of the Sabbath. Yet it was 
clearly not a breach of the Biblical, but of the Rabbinic Iaw. Not 
only to show them their error, but to lay down principles whick 
would for ever apply to this difficult question, was the object of 
Christ's reply. Unlike the others of the Ten Commandments, the 
Sabbath I^aw has in it two elements : the moral and the ceremonial ; 
the eternal, and that which is subject t-o time and place ; the inward 
and spiritual, and the outward (the one as the mode of realising the 
other). In their distinction and separation lies the difBoulty of the 
subject. In its spiritual and eternal element, the Sabbath Law 
embodied the two thoughts of rest for worship, and worship which 

' ThuB CShabb. T4 i, linca 12,11 from the top. and then pluck off the floff below, 
bottoni). if H person were to pull out u it woiUd involve three lalxmrs and thne 
feather from the wing of a bird, cut ott sln-offeringB. 



P^^^tped to rest. The keeping of the seventh day, and the Jewish 

™ocie of its observance, were the temporal / and outward form in 

^*^cli these eternal principles were presented. Even Rabbinism, in 

sortx^ measure, perceived this. It was a principle, that danger to life 

^^^peiseded the Sabbath Law,^ and, indeed, all other obligations.^ 

-A-^iiong the curious Scriptural and other arguments by which this 

^^*"incjiple was supported, that which probably would most appeal to 

cioimnon sense was derived from Lev. xviii. 5. It was argued, that 

^ xnan was to keep the commandments that he might live — certainly 

'^ot, that by so doing he might die.* In other words, the outward 

•^i^ode of observance was subordinate to the object of the observance. 

^ et this other and kindred principle did Eabbinism lay down, that 

^Arery positive conmiandment superseded the Sabbath-rest. This was 

^-^e xdtimate vindication of work in the Temple, although certainly 

^^t its explanation. Lastly, we should, in this connection, include 

"^liis important canon, laid down by the Rabbis : * a single Rabbinic 

P^oliibition is not to be heeded, where a graver matter is in 


All these points must be kept in view for the proper under- 
st3.iiding of the words of Christ to the Scribes. For, while going far 
"^yond the times and notions of His questioners. His reasoning must 
'^ve been within their comprehension. Hence the first argument of 
^^^^ Lord, as recorded by all the Synoptists, was taken from Biblical 
History. When, on his flight from Saul, David had, *when an 
t^ngered,* eaten of the shewbread, and given it to his followers,^ 
^though, by the letter of the Levitical Law,*^ it was only to be eaten 
"y the priests, Jewish tradition vindicated the conduct of David on 
the plea that * danger to life superseded the Sabbath-Law,' and 
'^^Uce, all laws connected with it,* while, to show David's zeal for the 
'^^bbath Law, it is added, that he had reproved the priests of Nob, 
^to had been baking the shewbread on the Sabbath.^ To the first 
^gimient of Christ, St. Matthew adds this as His second, that the 
P^^^sts, in their services in the Temple, necessarily broke the Sabbath- 



• Jer. Shabb. 
xiv. 4 

^ Jer. 

Shabb. xvi. 

" L*v. xxiv. 

"• Ynlkut ii. 
I)ar. 130, 
p. 18 d 

' But only where the life of an Israel- 
ii* not of a heathen or Samaritan, was 
^ danger (Toma 84 b). 
^ ' MaimmideM, Hilc. Shabb. ii. 1 ( Yad 
^Ch. VOL i. i»rt iii. p. 141 a) : * The Sab- 
^^ is set aside on account of danger to 

^^ as all other ordinances (^3 IXK^D 

' Aooordingto 1 Bam. xxii. 9 Ahimelech 
^[^jah, 1 Sam. xiv. 3) was the High 
^^^ We infer, that Abiathar was con- 

joined with his father in the priesthood. 
Comp. the * Bible- History,' vol. iv. p. 

* The question discussed in the Talmud 
is, whether, supposing an ordinary Israel- 
ite discharged priestly functions on the 
Sabbath in the Temple, it would involve 
two sins : unlawful service and Sabbath- 
desecration ; or only one sin, unlawful 


Law without thereby inciurmg guilt. It is curious, that the Talmnd 
discusses this very point, and that, by way of illustration, it intro- 
duces au argument from Lev. xxii. 10 : ' There shall no stranger eat 
of things consecrated.' This, of course, embodies the principle 
underlying the prohibition of the isbewbread to all who were not 
priests." Without entering further on it, the discussion at least 
shows, that the Rabbis were by no means clear on the rationale rf 
Sabbath-work in the Temple. 

In truth, the reason why David was blameless in eating the shew- 
bread was the same as that which made the Sabbath-labour of the 
priests lawful. The Sabbath-Law was not one merely of rest, but of 
rest for worship. The Service of the Lord was the object in view. 
The priests worked on the Sabbath, because this service was the 
object of the Sabbath ; and David was allowed to eat of the shew- 
bread, not because there was danger to life from starvation, but 
because he pleaded that lie was on the service of the Lord, and 
needed this provision. The disciples, when following the Lord, were 
similarly on the service of the Lord ; ministering to Him was more 
than ministering in the Temple, for He was greater than the Tempi©. 
If the Pharisees had beUeved this, they would not have questioned 
their conduct, nor in so doing have themselves infringed that higher 
Law which enjoined mercy, not sacrifice. 

To this St. Mark adds as a corollary i ' The Sabbath was made for 
man, and not man for the Sabbath." It is remarkable, that a similar 
argument is used by the Rabbis. When insisting that the Sabbaths 
Law should be set aside to avoid danger to life, it is urged : ' the- 
Sabbath is handed over to you; not, je are handed over to the 
Sabbath."' Lastly, the three Evangelists record this as the final ontr- 
come of His teaching on this subject, that ' The Son of Man is Lord 
of the Sabbath also.' The Service of God, and the Service of the 
Temple, by universal consent, superseded the Sabbath-I^w. Bat 
Christ was greater than the Temple, and His Service more truly that 
of God, and higher than that of the outward Temple — and the 
Sabbath was intended for man, to serve God; therefore Christ and 
His Service were superior to the Sabbath-Law. Thus much would 
be intelligible to these Pharisees, although they would not receive it, 
because they believed not on Him as the Sent of God,' 

But to us the words mean more than this. They preach not only 

We may liero agaie stat«, that D 
this after Kt. Luke vl *; "The 
day, having beholden a man woik- 

mg □□ (he Sabbntb, He said lo him ; " Han, 
if thou knowest what thtiu ctosl, blessed 
art thoD : but if thon knoweBt not, tittn 


that the Service of Christ is that of God, but that, even more than in 

the Temple, all of work or of liberty is allowed which this service 

requires. We are free while we are doing anything for Christ ; God 

loves mercy, and demands not sacrifice ; His sacrifice is the service of 

Chrigt, in heart, and life, and work. We are not free to do anything 

we {dease ; but we are free to do anything needful or helpful, while 

^e are doing any service to Christ. He is the Lord of the Sabbath, 

Whom we serve in and through the Sabbath. And even this is 

significant^ that, when designating Himself Lord of the Sabbath, it is 

^ * the Son of Man.' It shows, that the narrow Judaistic form 

'Raiding the day and the manner of observance is enlarged into the 

^Wer Law, which applies to all humanity. Under the New Testament 

^^ Sabbath has, as the Church, become Catholic^ and its Lord is 

^^l^irist as the Son of Man, to Whom the body Catholic oflfers the 

•^^^^ptaMe service of heart and life. 

The question as between Christ and the Pharisees was not, how- 
^^^», to end here. * On another Sabbath ' — probably that following — 
^^ was in their Synagogue. Whether or not the Pharisees had 
woiig^t *the man with the withered hand ' on purpose, or placed him 
y^ a ooDspicuous position, or otherwise raised the question, certain it 
^ t'hat their secret object was to conmiit Christ to some word or deed, 
^*xich would lay Him open to the capital charge of breaking the 
^bbath-Law. It does not appear, whether the man with the withered 
T^^^d was consciously or unconsciously their tool. But in this they 
J^^^iged rightly: that Christ would not witness disease without 
'^Hioving it — or, as we might express it, that disease cotdd not 
f^^tinue in the Presence of Him, Who was the Life. He read their 
^'^arf thoughts of evil, and yet He proceeded to do the good which 
"^^ puxposed. So God, in His majestic greatness, carries out the 
P^itpose which He has fixed — which we call the law of nature — who- 
^Ver and whatever stand in the way ; and so God, in His sovereign 
Soodness, adapts it to the good of His creatures, notwithstanding 
^^ir evil thoughts. 

So much uncleamess prevails as to the Jewish views about healing 

"^ the Sabbath, that some connected information on the subject 

^eems needful. We have already seen, that in their view only actual 

^ajiger to life warranted a breach of the Sabbath-Law. But this 

opened a large field for discussion. Thus, according to some, disease 

^ uoined and a transgressor of the be said, that the words, as placed in St. 
^**' {Niekclum, Gospel according to Luke, arc a spurious addition. 
•'^Hrtiews.p. 161). It need scarcely 


of the ear,' according to some throat-disease,'' while, according to 
others, such a disease as angina," involved danger, and snperseded thfr 
Sabbath-Law. Alt applications to the ootside of the body were 
forbidden on the Sabbath. As regarded internal remedies, such 
substances as were used in health, but had also a remedial effect, 
might be taken,'' although here also there was a way of evading the 
Law.' A person suffering from toothache might not gargle his 
mouth with vinegar, but he might use an ordinary toothbrush and 
dip it in rinegar.* The Gemara here adds, that gargling was lawful, 
if the substance was afterwards swallowed. It further explains, that 
affections extending from the lips, or else from the throat, inwards, 
may be attended to, being regarded as dangerous. Quite a number 
of these are enumerated, showing, that either the Rabbis were very 
lax in applying their canon about mortal diseases, or else that they 
reckoned in their number not a few which we would not regard as 
such.* External lesions also might be attended to, if they involved 
danger to life.* Similarly, medical aid might be called in, if a 
person had swallowed a piece of glass ; a splinter might be removed 
■ from the eye, and even a thorn from the body.^ 

But although the man with the withered hand could not be 
classed with those dangerously ill, it could not have been difficult to 
silence the Rabbis on their own admissions. Clearly, their principle 
implied, that it was lawful on the Sabbath to do that which would 
save life or prevent death. To have tanght otherwise, would virtually " 
have involved murder. But if so, did it not also, in strictly logical 
sequence, imply this far wider principle, that it must be lawful to do 
good on the Sabbath '/ For, eridently, the omission of such gooi 
would have involved the doing of evil. Could this be the jiropw 
observance of God's holy day? There was no answer to such an 
argument ; St. Mark expressly records that they dared not attempt » 
reply.* On the other hand, St. Matthew, while alluding to thiff 
terribly telling challenge,'' records yet another and a personal 
argument. It seems that Christ pubhcly appealed to them : If any 
ixtor man among them, who had one sheep, were in danger of losing 


' Thus, when a Rnbbi is oonsnllfcl, 
whether a man might on the Sabbath 
take a certain drink which had a parga- 
tive effect, he siamereil ; ' If for pleasure 
it is lawful; if for healing forbidden' 
(Jer. Shnbb. U c). 

'Thoa one otlhe Rabbis regarded fcetor 
of the breath as powtblf dangerous (u. e. 


• DisplBoement of the frontal bone, 
disenae of the neTves leading from tho 
ear to the upper jaw, an eye storting from 
it>i socket, severe inHammations, iind 
E welling woiinils, are specially men- 


it. tihroogh having fallen into a pit, would he not lift it out ? To be 
sure, the Rabbinic Law ordered that food and drink should be lowered 
to it, or else that some means should be furnished by which it might 
eitHer be kept np in the pit, or enabled to come out of it.' But even ' 
the Tahnud discusses cases in which it was lawful to Uft an animal 
out of a pit on a Sabbath." There could be no doubt, at any rate, '. 
that even if the Law was, at the time of Christ, aa stringent as in the t< 
Talznnd, a man would have foand some device, by which to recover 
the BoUtary sheep which constituted his possession. And was not 
the life of a human being to be more accounted of ? Surely, then, 
"OH the Sabbath-day it was lawful to do good ! Yes — to do good, and 
to neglect it, would have been to do evil. Nay, according to their 
^v-n admission, should not a man, on the Sabbath, save life; or 
should he, by omitting it, kill ? 

'We can now imagine the scene in that Synagogue. The place is 
'"^wded. Christ probably occupies a prominent position as leading 
*Qe prayers or teaching : a position whence He can see, and be seen 
°y alL Here, eagerly bending forward, are the dark faces of the 
'^Ikarisees, expressive of curiosity, malice, cunning. They are looking 
'^Und at a man whose right hand is withered,* perhaps putting him ' 
ft>iTraKi, drawing attention to him, loudly whispering, ' Is it lawful 
*** teal on the Sahbath-day ? ' The Lord takes up the challenge. 
ff » bids the man stand forth — right in the midst of them, where they 
■"^ight all see and hear. By one of those telling appeals, which go 
stj'a^ht to the conscience, He puts the analogous case of a poor man 
*lio was in danger of losing his only sheep on the Sabbath : would 
he not rescue it; and was not a man better than a sheep? Kay, did 
***ey not themselves enjoin a breach of the Sabbath-Law to save 
ttXxanan life ? Then, must He not do so ; might He not do good 
r^-thex than evil ? 

They were speechless. But a strange mixture of feeling was in 
t*»e Saviour's heart — strange to us, though it is but what Holy 
S^^ptnre always tells us of the manner in which God views sin and 
ttie sinner, using terms, which, in their combination, seem grandly 
Incompatible : ' And when He had looked round about on them with 
*Dger, being grieved at the hardening of their heart.' It was but 
Jot a moment, and then, with life-giving power, He bade the man 
Wretch forth his hand. Withered it was no longer, when the Word 
W been spoken, and a new sap, a fresh life had streamed into it, as, 
following the Saviour's Eye and Word, he slowly stretched it forth. 



And as he stretched it forth, his hand was restored.' The Saviour 
had broken their Sabbath-Law, and yet He had not broken it, for 
neither by remedy, nor touch, nor outward application had He healed 
him. He had broken the Habbatb-rest, as God breaks it, when He 
sends, or sustains, or restores life, or does good : all nnseen and 
unheard, without touch or outward application, by the Word of His 
Power, by the Presence of His Life. 

But who after this will say, that it was Paul who first introduced 
into the Church either the idea that the Sabbath-I^w in its Jewish 
form was no longer binding, or this, that the narrow forms of 
Judaism were burst by the new wine of that Kingdom, which is that 
of the Son of Man ? 

They had all seen it, this miracle of almost new creation. Aa 
He did it, He had been filled with sadness ; as they saw it, ' they 
were filled with madness.' ■ So their hearts were hardened. They 
could not gainsay, but they went forth and took counsel with the 
Herodians against Him, how they might destroy Him. Presumably, 
then, He was within, or quite close by, the dominions of Herod, east 
of the Jordan. And the Lord withdrew once more, as it seems to hb, 
into Gentile territory, probably that of the Decapolis. For, as He 
went about healing all, that needed it, in that great multitude that 
followed His steps, yet enjoining silence on them, this prophecy ef 
Isaiah blazed into fulfilment : ' Behold My Servant, WTiom I have 
chosen, My Beloved, in Whom My eoul is well-pleased ; I will put- 
Mj Spirit upon Him, and He shall declare judgment to the Gentiles^ 
He shall not strive nor cry aloud, neither shall any hear His Voice 
in the streets. A bruised reed shall He not break, and smoking Bax 
shall He not queneli, till He send forth judgment unto victory. And 
in His Name shall the Gentiles trust.' 

And in His Naine shall the Gentiles trust. Far out into the 
silence of those solitary upland hills of the Gentile world did the call, 
unheard and unheeded in Israel, travel. He had other sheep whioli 
were not of that fold. And down those hills, from the far-off lands, 
does the sound of the bells, as it comes nearer and nearer, tell that 
those other sheep, which are not of this fold, are gathering at His call 
to the Goofl Shepherd ; and through these centuries, still louder and 
more manifold becomes this sound of nearing bells, till they shall all 
be gathered into one : one flock, one fold, one Shepherd. 

' The tcuHE indicales, that it was re- 
stored ss he stretched it oat. And this 
is spiritually Hi(;ni<iciiDt. AccoriUng to 
8t, Jerot-u (Comm. in Matt lii. 13), iii the 
Qospel of the Namrenea and EbioDiteB 

>n, and 






(St. Matt. XV. 92-ivi. 12; St. Mark viii. 1-21.) 

-*'set might well gather to Jesus in their thousands, with their waote chap. 

**' body and Bool, these sheep wandering without a shepherd; for His xxxvi 

"ministry in that district, as formeriy in Galilee, was about to diaw ' 

^ & close. And here it is remarkable, that each time His prolonged 

***y and Ministry in a district were brought to a close with some 

supper, BO to epeak, some festive entertainment on His part. The 

Galilean Ministry had closed with the feeding of the five thousand, 

the guests being mostly &om Capernaum and the towns around, as 

^^^ as Bethsaida (Julias), many in the number probably on their way 

^ the Paschal Feast at Jerusalem.' But now at the second provision 

'or the focT thousand, with which His Deca]xiliB Ministry closed, the 

K^ert* were not strictly Jews, but semi-Gentile inhabitants of that 

•iistriet and its neighbourhood. Lastly, His Judsean Ministry closed 

**th the Last Supper. At the first ' Supper,' the Jewish guests 

*'^t»ld fein have proclaimed Him Messiah- King ; at the second, as 

*Ue Son of Man,' He gave food to those Gentile multitudes which, 

^ving been with Him those days, and consumed all their victuals 

'•tiring their stay with Him, He could not send away fasting, lest they 

should &int by the way. And on the last occasion, as the true Priest 

^'"i Sacri6ce, He fed His own with the tme Paschal Feast ere 

'le sent them forth alone into the wilderness. Thus these three 

Suppers ' seem connected, each leading up, as it were, to the other. 

There can, at any rate, be little doubt that this second feeding 

^ the mnltitade took place in the Gentile Decapolis, and that those 

r *ho sat down to the meal were chiefly the inhabitants of that dis- 

L ^rieL* If it be lawful, departing from strict history, to study the 

^K ' Conp. oh. xxix. of this Book. 

^m ' lUi tppean from tlie whole context. 


symbolism of this event, as compared with the previous feeding 
the five thousand who were Jews, somewhat singular diEFerencea wiE — 
" present themselves to the mind. On the former occasion there wer^* 
five thousand fed with five loaves, when twelve baskets of fragment- 
were left. On the second occasion, four thousand were fed froi^M 
seven loaves, and seven baskets of fragments collected. It is at lea^H 
curious, that the number^ye in the provision for the Jews is thati^M 
the Pentateuch, just as the number twelve corresponds to that of th ■■ 
tribes and of the Apostles. On the other hand, in the feeding of tlu ■ 
Gentiles we mark the number four, which is the signature of tlt^j 
world, and eeveii, which is that of the Sanctuary. We would not W^ 
any means press it, as if these were, in the telling of the narratives 
designed coincidences ; but, just because they are undesigned, w^^< 
value them, feeling that there is more of undesigned symboliam S.^ 
all God's manifestations- — in nature, in history, and in grace — thr»'T 
meets the eye of those who observe the merely phenomenal. Ma.^y 
does it not almost seem, as if all things were cast in the moni*ii 
of heavenly realities, and all earth's ' shewbread ' ' Bread of H-il 
Presence ' ? 

On all general points the narratives of the twofold miracalovit 
feeding run so parallel, that it is not necessary again to consider ttuil 
event in detail. But the attendant circumstances are so different^ 
that only the most reckless negative criticism could insist, that oii^ 
and the same event had been presented by the Evangelists as tvt> 
separate occasions.' The broad lines of difference as to the number 
of persons, the provision, and the quantity of fragments left, cannot 
be overlooked. Besides, on the former occasion the repast was pro- 
vided in the evening for those who had gone after Christ, and listened 
to Him all day, but who, in their eager haste, had come withoat 
victuals, when He would not. dismiss them faint and hungry, because 
they had been so busy for the Bread of I^ife that they had forgotten 
that of earth. But on this second occasion, of the feeding of the 
Gentiles, the multitude had been three days with Him, and what 
sustenance they brought must have failed, when, in His compassion, 
the Saviour would not send them to their homes fasting, lest they 
should faint by the way. This could not have befallen those G-en- 
tiles, who had come to the Christ for food to their souls. And, it 
must be kept in view, that Clmst dismissed them, not, as before, 
because they would have made Him their King, but because Him- 

' For a summajy of the great differ- 
ences between the two miraoleE, uomp. 

pp. 221. i 


^^'^f \^as about to depart from the place ; and that, sending them chap. 
^0 their homes, He could not send them to faint, by the way. Yet xxxvi 
another marked difference lies even in the designation of *the ' ' 

l^askets ' in which the fragments left were gathered. At the first 
feeding, they were, as the Greek word shows, the small wicker- 
baskets which each of the Twelve would carry in his hand. At the 
second feeding they were the large baskets, in which provisions, 
chiefly bread, were stored or carried for longer voyages.* For, on the 
fi^ occasion, when they passed into Israelitish territory — and, as 
ttey might think, left their home for a very brief time — ^there was 
ilot the same need to make provision for storing necessaries as on 
tke second, when they were on a lengthened journey, and passing 
through, or tarrying in Gentile territory. 

But the most noteworthy difference seems to us this — that on ^ 

the first occasion, they who were fed were Jews — on the second, 

Gentiles. There is an exquisite little trait in the narrative which 

^otds striking, though utterly undesigned, evidence of it. In refer- 

J^g to the blessing which Jesus spake over the jirst meal, it was 

^^ted,* that, in strict accordance with Jewish custom. He only 

rendered thanks once, over the bread. But no such custom would 

nile His conduct when dispensing the food to the Gentiles ; and, 

ij^deed, His speaking the blessing only over the bread, while He was 

"lent when distributing the fishes, would probably have given rise 

to misunderstanding. Accordingly, we find it expressly stated that 

He not only gave thanks over the bread, but also spake the blessing 

over the fishes.* Nor should we, when marking such undesigned •st.Mark 

^^dences, omit to notice, that on the first occasion, which was imme- 

^tely before the Passover, the guests were, as three of the Evan- 

S^lists expressly state, ranged on * the grass,' ^ while, on the present b st. >utt 

^^^^casion. which must have been several weeks later, when in the sJMarkvi. 

-■^-^ the grass would be burnt up, we are told by the two Evangelists vt'io * 

^hat they sat on * the ground.' ' Even the difficulty, raised by some, 

^* to the strange repetition of the disciples' reply, the outcome, in 

P^ of non-expectancy, and, hence, non-belief, and yet in part 

^1*0 of such doubt as tends towards faith : * Whence should we have, 

* The K^iFot (St. Matt. xir. 20) was makes it more marked is, that the dis- 

^ small handbasket (see ch. zxix.), tinction of the two words is kept up in 

1*^ the «wp(t( the term used at the feed- the reference to the two miracles (St. 

^^ the four thousand) is the large pro- Matt. zvi. 9, 10). 

^J-bwket or hamper, such as that in * See ch. xxix. 

''''** St. Paid was let down over the ■ Literally, * upon the earth.* 

^ it Damascus (Acts ix. 26). What 

VOL. n. F 



in a solitary place,' so many loaves as to fill so great a multitud* 
seems to us only confirmatory of the narrative, so psychologica 
true is it. There is no need for the ingenious apology,* that, in ( 
remembrance and tradition of the firet and secoad feeding, the sin 
larity of the two events had led to greater similarity in their nan 
tion than the actual circumstances would perhaps have warranto 
Interesting thoughts are here suggested by the remark,* that it 
not easy to transport ourselves into the position and feelings of thof 
who had witnessed such a miracle as that of the first feeding of ti 
multitade. 'We think of the Power as inherent, and, therefcot 
permanent. To them it might seem intermittent — a gift that cam 
and went/ And this might seem borne out by the feet that, evi 
since, their wants had been supplied in the ordinary way, and tha 
even on the first occasion, they had been directed to gather np tl 
fragments of the Heaven-supplied meal. 

But more than this requires to be said. First, we must he 
once more remind ourselves, that the fonner provision was for Jen 
and the disciples might, from their standpoint, well doubt, or at lea 
not assume, that the same miracle would supply the need of tl 
Gentiles, and the same board be surrounded by Jew and G-entil 
But, further, the repetition of the same question by the diseipl 
really indicated only a sense of their own inability, and not a don 
of the Saviour's power of supply, since on this occasion it was nc 
as on the former, accompanied by a request on their part, to sei 
the multitude away. Tbne the very repetition of the questioD mig 
be a humble reference to the past, of which they dared not, in tl 
circumstances, ask the repetition. 

Yet, even if it were otherwise, the strange forgetfulness of ChrisI 
late miracle on the part of the disciples, and their strange repetitit 
of the self-same question which had once — and, as it might seem 
us, for ever — been answered by wondrous deed, need not surpri 
us. To them the miraculous on the part of Christ must ever ha 
been the new, or else it would have ceased to be the miraculoi 
Nor did they ever fully realise it, till after His Resurrection th 
understood, and worshipped Him as God Incarnate. And it is on 
realising faith of this, which it was intended gradually to evol 
during Christ's Ministry on earth, that enables us to apprehend t 
Divine Help as, so to speak, incarnate and ever actually present 
Christ. And yet, even thus, how often do we, who have ao believ- 

■ The word ipruAla means a spedallj lonely place, • Of Bkek. 


i&Hiin, forget the Divine providoa which has come to ue bo lately, ci 
and repeat, thoogh perhaps not with the same donbt, yet with the xi 
rame vutt of certainty, the questions with which we had at first met 
the Sarionr's challenge of our faith. And even at the last it is 
met, iLs by the prophet, in sight of the apparently impossible, by: 
'Lead, Thou knowest.'* More frequently, alas ! is it met by non- 'Ek 
belief misbelief, disbelief, or doubt, engendered by misunderstanding 
or foigetfolnesB of that which past experience, as well as the know- 
ledge of Him, should long ago have written indelibly on our minds. 

On the occasion referred to in the preceding narrative, those who 
bd lately taken counsel together against Jesus — the Pharisees and 
the Herodians, or, to put it otherwise, the Pharisees and Saddncees 
—were not present. For, those who, politically speaking, were 
' Herodians,' might also, though perhaps not religiously speaking, yet 
from the Jewish standpoint of St. Matthew, be designated as, or else 
inclnde, Saddncees.' But they were soon to reappear on the scene, 
as Jesns came close to the Jewish territory of Herod. We suppose " 
the feeding of the multitude to have taken place in the Decapolis, 
and probably on, or close to, the Eastern shore of the Lake of 
*Mee, As Jesus sent away the multitude whom He had fed, He 
toot ship with His disciples, and ' came into the borders of Maga- 
tfan,'" or, as St. Mark puts it, 'the parts of Dalmanutha.' 'The »Bt 
I'wJers of Magadan ' must evidently refer to the same district as 
'the parts of Dalmanutha.' The one may probably mark the ex- 
t^^tne point of the district southwards, the other northwards, in the 
locality where He and His disciples landed. This is, of course, 
only a suggestion, since neither * Magadan,' nor ' Dalmanutha,' has 
'*eii identified. This only we infer, that the place was close to, 
jet not within the boundary of, strictly Jewish territory ; since on 
His arrival there the Pharisees are said to 'come forth'" — a word 'St 
which implies, that theyre3idedelsewhere,'*though, of course, in the 
"eighbonrhood. Accordingly, we would seek Magadan south of the 
^e of Tiberias, and near to the borders of Galilee, but vrithin the 
*^poUs. Several sites bear at present somewhat similar names, 
hi regard to the strange and un-Jewish name of Dalmanutha, such 
itterly unlikely conjectures have been made, that one based on ety- 
ttwlogy may be hazaj^ed. If we take from DalmaniUka the Aramaic 
'^nnination -utka, and regard the initial cZe as a prefix, we have the 

' Compare, however, TT>1. i. pp. 238, ' It nceil scarcely be said that the best* 

'H.ud iii. Where the poli- reading is MaKadaa, Dot Magdala. 

^ tlanent was dominant, the religrioQs * Canon C'txii in the 'tip^ikcr's Com- 

'^ioctios might not be so clearly marked, roentarj,' ad loc. 


BOOK root Laman, Lihint, or L'ditiaah ([o^, po^, r^y^ch = Xt/x7;i/), whic/^r 
lu in Eabbinic Hebrew, means a hay^ or poi't^ and Dalmanutha mighi ^■ 
have been the place of a small bay. Possibly, it was the name give 
to the bay close to the ancient Tarichcea^ the modem Kerak,i* 
terribly famous for a sea-fight, or rather a horrible butchery of poo^" 
fugitives, when Taricha?a was taken by the Romans in the last war- 
Close by, the Lake forms a bay {Lariian\ and if, as a modem writeKT' 
asserts,* the fortress of Tarichaea was surrounded by a ditch fed hy^ 
the Jordan and the Lake, so that the fortress could be converted intc^ 
an island, we see additional reason for the designation of Lamanutka,'^ 

It was from the Jewish territory of Galilee, close by, that thi 
Pharisees now came * with the Sadducees,' tempting Him mi 
questions, and desiring that His claims should be put to the ulti— - 
mate arbitrament of * a sign from heaven.' We can quite understan^K 
such a challenge on the part of Sadducees, who would disbelier^^ 
the heavenly Mission of Christ, or, indeed, to use a modem teim-^ 
any supra-naturalistic connection between heaven and earth, But-^ 
in the mouth of the Pharisees also, it had a special meanings- 
Certain supposed miracles had been either witnessed by, or testifie 
to them, as done by Christ, As they now represented it — since Christ' 
laid claims which, in their view, were inconsistent with the doctrin< 
received in Israel, preached a Kingdom quite other than that c 
Jewish expectancy — was at issue with all Jewish customs — ^more tha" 
this, was a breaker of the Law, in its most important commandment^^ 
as they understood them — it followed that, according to Deut. xiiL — f 
He was a false prophet, who was not to be listened to. Then, alsd^y 
must the miracles which He did have been wrought by the power c^f 
Beelzebul, * the lord of idolatrous worship,' the very prince of devil^^- 
But had there been real signs, and might it not all have been a-'^ 
illusion ? Let Him show them ' a sign,' ^ and let that sign oon^^® 
direct from heaven ! 

Two striking instances from fiabbinic literature will show, 
this demand of the Pharisees was in accordance with their notioi 
and practice. We read that, when a certain Kabbi was asked by 
disciples about the time of Messiah's Coming, he replied: *I 
afraid that you will also ask me for a sign.' When they promif 

* Seppf ap. Biittger, Topogr. Lex. zu analogous instances, be T\\H COtk)^ 
Fl. Josephns, p. 240. not p^D {Siman), as Wiinsote sngg 

.u ^i^'fjl f '°*^ u-^* ^JT''^ T e^<^ ^^o^Kh the wonl is formed from 
the chief dep6t for salting the fish for q^^ % ^^^ ^ Rabbinic*. 

export, the disciples nuiy have had some g^ems to me to have a different riiade 
connections with the place. mcanine ««"«' 

' The word here used would, to jadge by ^' 


they would not do so, he told them that the gate of Borne would fall chap. 
and be rebuilt, and fall again, when there would not be time to xxxvi 
testore it, ere the Son of David came. On this they pressed him, ^ 
despite his remonstrance, for * a sign,' when this was given them — 
that the waters which issued from the cave of Pamias were turned 
into blood.* * Again, as regards * a sign from heaven,' it is said that [^^J^u^** 
the Rabbi Elieser, when his teaching was challenged, successively 
'appealed to certain * signs.' First, a locust-tree moved at his bid- 
diBg one hundred, or, according to some, four hundred cubits. Next, 
the channels of water were made to flow backwards ; then the 
^8 of the Academy leaned forward, and were only arrested at the 
bidding of another Eabbi. Lastly, Elieser exclaimed : * If the Law 
^ M I teach, let it be proved from heaven ! ' when a voice fell from 
*e sky (the Bath Kol) : * What have ye to do with Rabbi Elieser, 
for the Halachah is as he teaches ? ' ^ w^mi^ 

It was, therefore, no strange thing, when the Pharisees asked of ^™ ^^\ 

Jesng^a sign from heaven,' to attest His claims and teaching. The 

^J^er which He gave was among the most solemil which the leaders 

-of larael could have heard, and He spake it in deep sorrow of spirit.*^ yui'i^a*'^ 

Tkej had asked Him virtually for some sign of His Messiahship ; 

wme striking vindication from heaven of His claims. It would be 

given them only too soon. We have already seen,* that there was a 

Coming of Christ in His Kingdom — a vindication of His kingly claim 

before His apostate rebellious subjects, when they who would not have 

^ to reign over them, but betrayed and crucified Him, would have 

w^eir commonwealth and city, their polity and Temple, destroyed. 

% the lurid light of the flames of Jerusalem and the Sanctuary were 

"^he words on the Cross to be read again. God would vindicate His 

^Ws by laying low the pride of their rebellion. The burning of 

^^ernsalem was God's answer to the Jews' cry, ' Away with Him — we 

*^ve no king but Caesar ; ' the thousands of crosses on which the 

Lilians hanged their captives, the terrible counterpart of the Cross 

<^^ Golgotha. 

It was to this, that Jesus referred in His reply to the Pharisees 
^d * Sadducean ' Herodians. How strange ! Men could discern by the 
"Appearance of the sky whether the day would be fair or stormy.^ 

* However, this (and, for tliat matter, St. Matt xvi. 2, beginning * When it is 

jjjnext Haggadah also) may have been evening,' to the end of ver. 3, most critics 

'Vtt«Dd«d to be taken in an alli^ric or are agreed that they should be retained, 

t'fi^lic sense, though there is no hint But the words in italics in vv. 2 and 3 

&*«n to that effect. should be left out, so as to mark excla- 

' See ch. xxvii. voL i. p. 647. mat ions. 

' Ahhongh some of the best 2^188. omit 


And yet, when all the signs of the gathering storm, that, would 
destroy their city and people, were clearly visible, they, the leaders of 
the people, failed to perceive them ! Israel asked for ' a sign ' ! No 
sign should be given the doomed land and city other than that which 
had been given to Nineveh : ' the sign of Jonah.' ' The only sign 
Nineveh was Jonah's solemn warning of near judgment, and his 
to repentance — and the only sign now, or rather ' unto this geneiatic 
no sign," was the warning cry of judgment and the loving call tr- -^ 
repentance.** I 

It was but a natural, almost necessary, sequence, that ' He lekna 
them and departed.' Once more the ship, which bore Him and HS^ 
disciples, spread its sails towards the coast of Bethsaida-Julias. IKTAt 
was on Hia way to the utmost limit of the land, to Ciesarea Philippwi, 
in pursuit of His purpose to delay the final conflict. For the gr&^t 
crisis must begin, as it would end, in Jerusalem, and at the Fea»"t; 
it would begin at the Feast of Taberuacles,'' and it would end at tlie 
foUowiug Passover. But by the way, the disciples themselves showed 
how little even they, who had so long and closely followed Christ, iind^sr- 
stood His teaching, and how prone to misapprehension their si)irit«iai 
dulness rendered them. Yet it was not so gross and altogether incom- 
prehensible, as the common reading of what. hai>pened would impl>'« 
"When the I^ord touched the other shore. His raind and heart 
were still full of the scene from wluch He had lately jmssed. Fof 
truly, on this demand for a sign did the future of Israel seem t^ 
hang. Perhaps it is not presumptuou-i to suppose, that the joume^ 
across the Lake had been made in silence on His part, so deeply 
were mind and heart engrossed with the fate of His own royal city-- 
And now, when they landed, they carried ashore the empty provision-"^ 
baskets ; for, as, with his usual attention to details, St. Mark notes^^ 
they had only brought one loaf of bread with them. In fact, in thv^ 
excitement and hiury ' they forgot to take bread ' with them. 
V-Tiether or not something connected with this arrested the attention 
of Christ, He at last broke the silence, speaking that which was so- 
much on his mind. He warned them, as greatly they needed it, of the 
leaven with which Pharisees and Sadducees had, each in their own 
manner, leavened, and so corrupted,* the holy bread of Scriptur&- 
tnith. The disciples, aware that in their hurry and excitement they 

' So according- to the best reading. 

■ The (tgnrativo mcamng: of lenven, as 
that which morally corruplg, WM familar 
to the JewB. Thos the word "nttE' 
(Seor) ia used in the sense of 'moral 

leaven ' hindering the good in Lvu. 
IT a. while the verb yon (r^wrej't* 7 
become lenvened,' is ostd lo indicaM ' 
moral deicrioiHtion in Iloah haSh. 3 i. 


Wl forgotten bread, misunderstood these words of Christ — although chap. 
Bat. in the utterly unaccountable manner which commentators gene- xxxvi 
rally suppose : as implying * a caution against procuring bread 
from His enemies.' It is well-nigh impossible, that the disciples 
coiald have understood the warning of Christ as meaning any such 
thing — even irrespective of the consideration, that a prohibition to 
^^y bread from either the Pharisees or Sadducees would have 
involved an impossibility. The misunderstanding of the disciples 
^^as, if unwarrantable, at, least rational. They thought the words of 
Clxrist implied, that in His view they had not forgotten to bring 
bread, but purposely omitted to do so, in order, like the Pharisees 
^^€X Sadducees, to ^ seek of Him a sign ' of His Divine Messiahship — 
^^y, to oblige Him to show such — that of miraculous provision in 
tti^ir want. The mere suspicion showed what was in their minds, 
^*^<J pointed to their danger. This explains how, in His reply, Jesus 
r^X^roved them, not for utter want of discernment, but only for * little 
'^^it.h.' It was their lack of faith — the very leaven of the Pharisees 
^xx^ Sadducees — which had suggested such a thought. Again, if the 
^^xperience of the past — their own twice-repeated question, and the 
px'actical answer which it had received in the miraculous provision of 
ttot only enough, but to spare — had taught them anything, it should 
Ita-^e been to believe, that the needful provision of their wants by 
Clxrist was not * a sign,' such as the Pharisees had asked, but what 
fetith might ever expect from Christ, when following after, or waiting 
Tii>on, Him. Then understood they truly, that it was not of the 
leiaven of bread that He had bidden them beware — ^that His mys- 
terious words bore no reference to bread, nor to their omitting to bring 
it. for the purpose of eliciting a sign from Him, but pointed to the 
far more real danger of * the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees,' 
^hich had underlain the demand for a sign from heaven. 

Here, as always, Christ rather suggests than gives the interpreta- 
tion of His meaning. And this is the law of His Teaching. Our 
Modern Pharisees and Sadducees, also, too often ask of Him a sign 
^m heaven in evidence of His claims. And we also too often mis- 
^derstand His warning to us concerning their leaven. Seeing the 
scanty store in our basket, our little faith is busy with thoughts 
^bout possible signs in multiplying the one loaf which we have, for- 
?6tful that, where Christ is, faith may ever expect all that is needful^ 
^d that our care should only be in regard to the teaching which 
^ht leaven and corrupt that on which our souls are fed. 

'i- v^T :f 77;an-7::}yratiox. 

. V \ 



N,. ^**.L. \vi. \t-:i8 : St. Mark viii. 27— ix. 1 ; St. Luke ix. lS-27.) 

. .. v.* KA^ai 'u Uleutifying the little bay — Dalmanutha — withtfci.e 

.>.\s.*AnW .'t 'l:u*ichik*a, yet another link of strange coincident::? ^ 

s.^vv^:^ »^- luojActio ^-aming sjxiken there with its fulfilmei 

vNxs. '^wluuu4Uiha our Lord i>assed across the Lake to 

"ii-.v ;.*• S'*v»«i i.Vsart*a Philippi did Vesj>asian pass through 

V *tXM.\Vt%s N^hcu the town and people were destroyed, and tli^ 
V H *'^-' ?u^Aii\\*«i rtxldened the Lake, and their bodies chok^?^ 

,^,Li*, ^^cu amidst the horrors of the last Jewish war, 
v»^.ix> N\*i*^^ ^^'*' ^**^^ ^^ sickening as that of the wild stand 
k\ .s.Vvv«> >,^*stt\^ ^ith the butchery of 6,500 on land and sea, a 
^ \ .>,,- \^U* Ut^ohery by which they, to whom mercy had beer:'' • 

* w C ^v^v Iui'^hI iw*^ ^^^ circus at Tiberias, when the weak an(^ 
v' -s^ \Nx»^ uumlvr of about 1,200, were slaughtered, and the resfc^ 
' yAv^.^^xN s^f iliMOO— sold into slavery.* » Well might He, )^Tio 
X \H^y^ M^nJ ft^^vtold that terrible end, standing on that spot, deeply 
w ^^ ^i^^i^ j|5i Uo si^Jike to them who asked 'a sign,' and yet saw 
'^^^ v^h^t ^'N^'^^ onlinary discernment might have perceived of the 
Inn^ .^ux« U^worius i*ky overhead. 

VV\«\ l>almanutha, across the Lake, then by the plain where so 

I xjv t ho •^•iHH) had been fed, and near to Bethsaida, would the 

I \f Ohrist and His disciples lead to the capital of the Tetrarch 

V\ \\\K tho ancient Paneas, or, as it was then called, Caesarea 

rhilippi the modem Banias. Two days' journey would accomplish 

(I * whole distance. There would be no need of taking the route 

usually followed, by Safed. Straight northwards from the Lake 

f Galilee a distance of about ten miles, leads the road to the 

I Tf it. were for no other reason than Galileans, Josephvs, tells this story, he 
nde in which the ex-general of the would deserve our execration. 


uppermost Jordan-Lake, that now called HuUK, the anciest Merom.' 
*" We ascend from the shores of Genneaaret, we have a receding 
^e-w of the whole I^e aad the Jordan-valley beyond. Before us 
''ise hills ; over them, to the west, are the heights of Safed ; beyond 
them swells the undulating plain between the two ranges of Anti- 
Libanus ; fer off is Hennon, with its twin snow-clad heads (• the 
Uermons '),* and, in the dim &r background, majestic Lebanon. It * 
'^ scarcely likely, that Jesus and His disciples skirted the almost 
unpenetrable marsh and jungle by I^ke Merom. It was there, that 
Joshua had fought the last and decisive battle against Jabin and his 
wnfederates, by which Northern Palestine was gained to Israel." We » 
tarn north of the Lake, and west to Kedes, the Kedesh Naphtali of 
tW Bible, the home of Barak. We have now passed ii-om the lime- 
stone of Central Palestine into the dark basalt formation. How 
splendidly that ancient Priest-City of Befuge lay ! In the rich 
heritage of Naphtali," Kedesh was one of the fairest spots. As we ' 
climb the steep hill above the marshes of Merom, we have before ue 
one rf the richest plains of about two thousand acres. We next 
pasa through olive-groves and up a gentle slope. On a knoll before 
**, at the foot of which gushes a copious spring, lies the ancient 

The scenery is very similar, as we travel on towards Ciesarea 

"bjlippi. About an hour and a half farther, we strike the ancient 

^Qian road. We are now amidst vines and mulberry- trees. Passing 

^*'ough a narrow rich valley, we ascend through a rocky wildemess 

°' bills, where the woodbine luxuriantly trails around the plane- 

''^s. On the height there is a glorious view back to Lake Merom 

^d the Jordan-valley ; forward, to the snowy peaks of Hermon ; east, 

^ height on height, and west, to peaks now only crowned with 

^*in9. We still continue along the height, then descend a steep 

*ope, leaving, on our left, the ancient Abel Beth Maachah,^ the ' 

Modern AbU. Another hour, and we are in a plain where all the 

^Ungs of the Jordan unite. The view from here is splendid, and 

'■Oe soil most rich, the wheat crops being quite ripe in the beginning 

'if May. Half an hour more, and we cross a bridge over the bright 

"W waters of the Jordan, or rather of the Hasbany, which, under a 

'tery wilderness of oleanders, honeysuckle, clematis, and wild rose, rcsh 

^BWng huge boulders, between walls of basalt. We leave aside, at 

' Fot tbe geographical details I moBt 
I fv to the woTka of Stanley and Trii- 
L '^ndlo.BadejIar'tPalastitia. Ibave 


BOOK a distance of about half an hour to the east, the ancient Dan (thi 
modem Tel 1-Kady), even more glorious in its beauty and richness thai 
what we have passed. Dan lies on a hill above the plain. On th^» ^ 
western aide of it , under overhanging masses of oleander and other trees^^^j 
and amidst masses of basalt boulders, rise what are called ' the lowe^^aef j 
Bjirings ' of Jordan, issuing as a stream from a basin sixty paces wid^^ _(■ j 
and from a smaller source close by. The ' lower springs ' supply tl^rzAe 
largest proportion of what forme the Jordan. And from Dan oliv^ — e 
groves and oak-glades slope up to Banias, or Cffisarea Pbilippi. 

The situation of the ancient Caesarea Philippi (1,147 feet abo" ^e 
the sea) is, indeed, magnilicent. Nesthng between three valleys ^m^o 
a terrace in the angle of Hermon, it is almost shut out from view "MDy 
cliffs and woods. ' Everywhere there is a wild medley of cascad^sa^ 
mulberry-trees, fig-trees, dashing torrents, festoons of vines, bubblizi^ 
fountains, reeds, and ruins, and the mingled music of birds and 
waters.'' The vegetation and fertility all around are estraordinaiy- 
The modem village of Banias is within the walls of the old fortific*- 
tious, and the ruins show that it must anciently have extendci 
far southwards. But the most remarkable points remain to b» 
described. The western side of a steej) mountain, crowned by tlie 
ruins of an ancient castle, forms an abrupt rock-wall. Here, from 
out an immense cavern, bursts a river. These are ' the upper 
sources ' of the Jordan. This cave, an ancient heathen sanctuary of 
Pan, gave its earhest name of Paneas to the town. Here Herod, 
when receiving the tetrarchy from Augustus, built a temple in his 
honoiu*. On the rocky wall close hy, votive niches may still be traced, 
one of them bearing the Greek inscription, ' Priest of Pan.' When 
Herod's son, Philip, received the tetrarchy, he enlarged and greatly 
beautified the ancient Paneas, and called it in honour of the Emperor,^ 
Ctesarea Philippi. The castle-mount (about 1,000 feet above Paneas), 
takes nearly an hour to ascend, and is separated by a deep valley 
from the flank of Mount Hermon. The castle itself (about two 
miles from Bauiaa) is one of the best preser\'ed ruins, its immense 
bevelled structure resembling the ancient forts of Jerusalem, and 
showing its age. It followed the irregularities of the mountain, and 
was about 1,000 feet iong by 200 wide. The eastern and higher 
I)art formed, as in Machferus, a citadel within the castle. In samt 
parts the rock rises higher than the walls. The views, sheer down 
the precipitous sides of the mountain, into the valleys and fiir away, 
are magnificent. 

' Triitrain, Land o[ Israel, p. E 


It eeems worth while, even at auoh length, to deBcribe the scenery chap. 
Bloxig this joomej, and the look and situation of Csesarea, when we xxxvn 
recall the importance of the events enacted there, or in the imme- • ' 
diate neighbourliood. It was into this chiefly Gentile district, that the 
Iiord now withdrew with His disciples after that last and decisive ques- 
tion of the Pharisees. It was here that, as His question, like Moses' 
"od, stmck their hearts, there leaped from the lips of Peter the living, 
life-spreading waters of his confession. It may have been, that this 
lock-wall below the castle, from under which sprang Jordan, or 
'he rock on which the castle stood, supplied the material suggestion 
for Christ's words : ' Thou art Peter, and on this rock will I build 
-"'ly Church." In Ctesarea, or its immediate neighbourhood,' did the 
I'Ord spend, with His disciples, six days after this confession ; and 
''©re, close by, on one of the heights of snowy Hermon, was the 
*^iie of the Transfiguration, the light of which shone for ever into 
iat^ hearts of the disciples on their dark and tangled path;* nay, *sP(t.Li9 
'^a*- beyond that — beyond life and death — beyond the grave and the 
judgment, to the perfect brightness of the Resurrection-day. 

As we think of it, there seems nothing strange in it, but all most 
w^se and most gracious, that such events should have taken place 
fe»* away from Galilee and Israel, in the solitary grandeur of the 
»badows of Hermon, and even amongst a chiefly Gentile population. 
^ot in Judfea, nor even in Galilee — but far away from the Temple, 
*he Synagogue, the Priests, Pharisees and Scribes, was the first con- 
i&ssion of the Church made, and on this confession its first founda- 
tions laid. Even this spoke of near judgment and doom to what 
'^axi once been God's chosen congregation. And all that happened, 
'bongh Divinely shaped as regards the end, followed in a natural 
^'id orderly succession of events. Let us briefly recall the circum- 
stances, which in the previous chapters have been described in detail. 
It had been needful to leave Capernaum. The Galilean Ministry 
'*' tie Christ was ended, and, alike the active jwrsecutions of the 
^^oariseea from Jerusalem, the inquiries of Herod, whose hands, 
attained with the blood of the Baptist, were tremblingly searching 
for hig greater Successor, and the growing indecision and unfitness 
^ the people— as well as the state of the disciples— pointed to the 
"ttd for leaving Galilee. Then followed ' the T,ast Supper ' to Israel 
wi tie eastern shore of Lake Gennesaret, when they would have 

SoStaiiley.withhiBiimialcharmof Ian- infer, that the wofiIb of Peter's confes- 

Enge, thongh topograpliicall; not qaite sion were spoken in Ciesarea itself. The 

"^VOy (Sinai and Faleaiine, p. 395). place might tiave been in view oi in the 

HoOung in the above obliges na to memoiy. 


BOOK made Him a King. He must now withdraw quite away, out of the 
in boundaries of Israel. Then came that miraculous night-journey, the 
' * brief Sabbath-stay at Capernaum by the way, the journey through 
Tyrian and Sidonian territory, and round to the Decapolis, the teach- 
ing and healing there, the gathering of the multitude to Him, to- 
gether with that * Supper,' which closed His Ministry there — and, 
finally, the withdrawal to Tarichaea, where His Apostles, as fishermen 
of the Lake, may have had business-connections, since the place was 
the great central depot for selling and preparing the fish for export. 
In that distant and obscure comer, on the boundary-line between 
Jew and Gentile, had that greatest crisis in the history of the world 
occurred, which sealed the doom of Israel, and in their place substi- 
tuted the Gentiles as citizens of the Kingdom. And, in this respect 
also, it is most significant, that the confession of the Church took 
place in territory chiefly inhabited by Gentiles, and the Transfigtira-' 
tion on Mount Hermon. That crisis was the public challenge of th 
Pharisees and Sadducees, that Jesus should legitimate His daimc 
to the Messiahship by a sign from heaven. It is not too much 
assert, that neither His questioners, nor even His disciples, xmdi 
stood the answer of Jesus, nor perceived the meaning of His * sign- 
To the Pharisees Jesus would seem to have been defeated, and 
stand self-convicted of having made Divine claims which, when cl 
lengcd, He could not substantiate. He had hitherto elected (as the] 
who understood not His teaching, would judge) to prove Himself tl^ e 
Messiah by the miracles which He had wrought — and now, wh^'tt 
met on His own ground, He had publicly declined, or at least evs 
the challenge. He had conspicuously — almost self-confessedly- 
failed ! At least, so it would ai)pear to those who could not 
stand His reply and * sign.' We note that a similar final challenj 
was addressed to Jesus by the High-Priest, when he adjured Hirr — ^ 
to say, whether He was what He claimed. His answer then was 
assertion — not a x)roof ; and, unsupported as it seemed, His questions 
would only regard it as blasphemy. 

But what of the disciples, who (as we have seen) would probabi ^*^v 
understand * the sign ' of Christ little better than the Pharisr**^^ *' 
That what might seem Christ's failure, in not daring to meet 
challenge of His questioners, must have left some impression 
them, is not only natural, but appears even from Christ's warning 
the leaven — that is, of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducee^^'* 
Indeed, that this unmet challenge and virtual defeat of Jesus d^^ 
2nake lasting and deepest impression in His disfavour, is evideCB^ 

JUDAS. 17 

-^rom the later challenge of His own relatiYes to go and meet the chap. 
ZTharisees at headqimrters in Judaea, and to show openly, if He xxxvn 
•^Dould, by His works, that He was the Messiah/ All the more •stjotm 
^remarkable appears ChriBt's dealing with His discipteB, His demand 
on, and training of their faith. It must be remembered, that His last 
* hard * sayings at Capernaum had led to the defection of many, who 
till then had been His disciples." Undoubtedly this had already "st-john 
tried their &ith, aa appears from the question of Christ : ' Will ye ramp. 
also go away?'" It was this wise and gracious dealing with them — it'.u 
this patting the one disappointment of doubt, engendered by what ^*;^'*'" 
they could not understand, against their whole past experience in 
following Him, which enabled them to overcome. And it ia this 
which also enables us to answer the doubt, perhaps engendered by in- 
ability to understand seemingly unintelligible, hard sayings of Christ, 
snch as that to the disciples about giving them His Flesh to eat, or 
EiboQt His being the Living Bread from heaven. And, this altema- 
tiTe being put to them : would they, could they, after their expe- 
rience of Him, go away from Him, they overcame, as we overcome, 
through what almost sounds like a cry of despair, yet is a shout of 
WctOTy : * Lord to whom shall we go ? Thou hast the words of 
eternal h'fe.' 

And al! that followed only renewed and deepened the trial of 
£titb, which had commenced at Capernaum. We shall, perhaps, best 
andeTstand it when following the progress of this trial in him who, 
It last, made shipwreck of his &ith : Judas Iscariot. Without 
at.t:«mpting to gaze into the mysterious abyss of the Satanic element 
'Q lis apostasy, we may trace his course in its psychological develop- 
nient. We must not regard Judas as a monster, but as one with 
Passions like ourselves. True, there was one terrible master-passion 
^^ his gonl — covetousness ; but that was only the downward, lower 
**pect of what seems, and to many really is, that which leads to the 
■^^gher and better — ambition. It had been thoughts of Israel's King 
^hich had first set his imagination on fire, and brought him to follow 
^be Messiah. Gradnally, increasingly, came the disenchantment. 
^^ was quite another Kingdom, that of Christ ; quite another King- 
*hip than what had set Judas aglow. This feeling was deepened aa 
events proceeded. His confidence must have been terribly shaken 
•hen the Baptist was beheaded. What a contrast to the time when 
■iw vrace had bent the thousands of Israel, as trees in the wind ! So 
ftji had been nothing — and the Baptist must be written off, not as 
^ bat as against, Christ. Then came the next disappointment. 


BOOK when Jesus would not be made King. Why not — if He were ICing? 
in And so on, step by step, till the final depth was reached, when Jesus 

' ' would not, or could not — which was it ? — meet the public challenge 
of the Pharisees. We take it, that it was then that the leaven per? 
yaded and leavened Judas in heart and soul. 

We repeat it, that what so, and for ever, penetrated Judas, left 
not (as Christ's warning shows) the others wholly imaffected. The 
very presence of Judas with them must have had its influence. And 
how did Christ deal with it ? There was, first, the silent sail across 
the Lake, and then the warning which put them on their guard, lest 
the little leaven should corrupt the bread of the Sanctuary, on which 
they had learned to live. The Littleness of their faith must be 
corrected ; it must grow and become strong. And so we can under- 

• st Luke stand what follows. It was after solitary prayer — no doubt for them* — 
that, with reference to the challenge of the Pharisees, * the leaven '* 
that threatened them, He now gathered up all their experience of thea 
past by putting to them the question, what men, the people who hadi 
watched His works and heard His words, regarded Him as being.. 
Even on them some conviction had been wrought by their observance 
of Him. It marked Him out (as the disciples said) as different 
all around, nay, from all ordinary men : like the Baptist, or 
or as if He were one of the old prophets alive again. But, if even th -^ 
multitude had gathered such knowledge of Him, what was theS- 
experience, who had always been with Him? Answered he, wl^< 
most truly represented the Church, because with the most advanc^^ 
experience of the three most intimate disciples he combined tlm-« 
utmost boldness of confession : * Thou art the Christ ! ' 

And so in part was this * leaven ' of the Pharisees purged ! Y^s 
not wholly. For then it was, that Christ spake to them of 
sufferings and death, and that the resistance of Peter showed h< 
deeply that leaven had penetrated. And then followed the 
contrast presented by Christ, between minding the things of 
and those of God, with the warning which it implied, and tl 
monition as to the necessity of bearing the cross of contempt^ 
the absolute call to do so, as addressed to those who would be 
disciples. Here, then, the contest about * the sign,' or rather 
challenge about the Messiahship, was carried from the mental in ^ 
the moral sphere, and so decided. Six days more of quiet waitii:::^ 
and growth of faith, and it was met, rewarded, crowned, and perfect^^ 
by the sight on the Mount of Transfiguration ; yet, even so, perceiv^^ 
only as through the heaviness of sleep. 


Thus fer for the general arrangement of these events. 

lov be prepared better to understand the details. It 1 

not for personal reasons, but to call attention to the impression made 

even on the popular mind, to correct its defects, and to raise the 

minds of the Apostles to &r higher thoughts, that He asked them 

aboQt the opinions of men concsming Himself. Their diSerence 

proved not only their incompetence to form a right view, but also 

tow many-sided Christ's teaching must have been. We are probably 

correct in supposing, that popular opinion did not point to Christ as 

literally the Baptist, Elijah, Jeremiah, or one of the other prophets 

who bad long been dead. For, although the literal reappearance of 

Elijah, and probably also of Jeremiah,' was expected, the Pharisees 

^ not teach, nor the Jews believe in, a transmigration of souls. 

Beiideg, no one looked for the return of any of the other old prophets, 

■M oould any one have seriously imagined, that Jesus was, literally, 

John the Baptist, since all knew them to have been contemporaries.' 

Bather would it mean, that some saw in Him the continuation of 

the work of John, as heralding and preparing the way of the Messiah, 

. or,iftheydidnotbelievein John, of that of Elijah ; while to others He 

seemed a second Jeremiah, denouncing woe on Israel,* and calling to 

•srdy repentance ; or else one of those old prophets, who had spoken 

stlierof the near judgment or of the coming glory. But, however 

tliey differed, in this ail agreed, that they regarded Him not as an 

oniiDuy man or teacher, but His Mission as straight from heaven ; 

*>id, alas, in this also, that they did Tiot view Him as the Messiah. 

Thm far, then, there was already retrogression in popular opinion, 

vA thus &r had the Pharisees already succeeded. 

There is a significant emphasis in the words, with which Jesus 

' IcoDfcM, however, to strong donbts 
"n Uiii point. L^;enda of the biding 
cllbe tkbemade, ark, and altar of in- 
<«W OD Mount Nebo by Jeremiah were, 
iodetd, combined with an expectation 
'lul then precioos possessions would be 
TWoifd in Ueiaianic times (2 Mace. ii. 
1-7), but it ia expressly added in ver. B, 
Itot ' the Lord ' Himself, and not the 
tnpltM, would show their phice of con- 
w^nient. I cannot understand Dean 
Aniftrv't statement to the contrary, nor 
^i imiitence, that the Pharisees taoght, 
« tile Jews beliered in, the doctrine 
<rf tie transmigration of Bonls. The 
■frtika ■ymn to have arisen from a 
id^iincbennoii of what Joaephiu said, 
«■ Ins been shown in the chapter on 
' ne Iluiiaeea, Saddnceee, and Kb- 

senes.' The first distinct mention of the 
reappearance of Jeremiah, along with 
Elijah, to restore (he ark, &c, ia in 
Jmj/jmiii ben Oorum (lib. i. c. 21), bat 
here also only in the Cod. Mututer., not 
in that used by Brcithavpt. The age of 
the works of Jotippon is in dispute ; pro- 
bably we may date it from the tenth 
century of our era. The only other 
testimony about the reappearance of 
Jeremiah is 1 Esd. (2 Esd.) ii. 18. But 
the book is post-Chri.itian, and, in that 
section especially, evidently borrows from 
the ChriEtian Scriptures. 

' On the vagne fears of Herod, see vol. 
i, p. 875. 

■ A vision of Jeremiah in adream was 
supposed to betoken chastisements (Ber. 
67 b, line S from top). 



turned from the opinion of ' the multitudes ' to elicit the &ith of tliMi^ 
disciples : ' But you, whom do you say that I am ? ' It is the mor — - 
marked, as the former question was equally emphasised by the vse t — -; 
the article (in the original) : ' Who do the men say that I am ? ' T ~~~\ 
that moment it leaped, by the power of God, to the lipa of Petet^aa 
' Thou art the Obriat (the Messiah), the Son of the Living Go r ^ ^ 
St. Chrysostom has beautifully designated Pet^?r as 'the month 4 
the Apostles ' — and we recall, iu this connection, the words of St. P^.. -b| 
as casting light on the representative character of Peter's confessii^mi 
as that of the Church, and hence on the meaning of Christ's rep"Ij, ! 
and its equally representative application : ' With the mouth can- i 
' fession is made unto salvation.' ' The words of the confession are , 
given somewhat differently by the three Evangelists. From our 
standpoint, the briefest form (that of St. Mark): 'Thou art tie '| 
Christ,' means quite as much as the fullest (that of St. Matthew) r 
'Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God,' We can thus 
imderstand, how the latter might be truthfully adopted, and, indeed, 
would be the most truthful, accurate, and suitable in a Gospel 
primarily written for the Jews. And here we notice, that the most | 
exact form of the words seems that in the Gospel of St. Luke : 'The | 
Christ of God.' 

In saying this, so far from weakening, we strengthen the import 
of this glorious confession. For, first, we must keep in view, that the 
confession : ' Thou art the Messiah ' is also that : ' Thou art the Son 
of the Living God.' If, according to the Gospels, we believe that 
Jesua wa^ the true Messiah, promised to the fathers — ' the Klesdah 
of God' — we cannot but believe that He is ' the Son of the Living 
God.' Scripture and reason equally jioint to this conclusion from the 
premisses. But, further, we must \'iew such a confession, even 
though made in the power of God, in its historical connection. The 
words must have been such as Peter could have uttered, and the I, 
disciples acquiesced in, at the time. Moreover, they should mark ft 
distinct connection with, and yet progress u^ion, the past. All these 
conditions are fulfilled by the view here taken. The full knowledge, 
in the sense of really understanding, that He was the Son of the Living 
God, came to the disciples only after the Resurrection.'' Previously to 
the confession of Peter, the ship's company, that had witnessed His 
walking on the water, had owned : ' Of a truth Thou art the Son of 
God,' ' but not in the sense in which a welt-informed, believing Jew 
would hail Him as the Messiah, and ' the Son of the Living God,* 
designating both His Office and His Nature — and these two in their 


ombiuati<Hi. Again, Peter liimfielf had made a confession of Christ, 
hen, after His discourse at Capernaum, so many of His disciples had ^ 
nraaken Him. It had been : ' We have believed, and know that Thou 
tt the Holy One of God.'" The mere mention of these voids ** 
lows both their internal oonnection with those of his last and 
rowning confession : ' Thou art the Christ of G-od,' and the immense 
rogress made. 

The more closely we view it, the loftier appears the height of this 
mfession. We think of it as an advance on Peter's past ; we think 
fit in ita remembered contrast to the late challenge of the Pharisees, 
ad as so soon following on the felt danger of their leaven. And 
e think of it, also, in its almost immeasurable distance from the 
ppreciative opinion of the better disposed among the people. In 
be words of this confession Peter has consciously reached the firm 
Tound of Messianic acknowledgment. All else is implied in this, 
nd would follow from it. It is the first real confession of the 
i!!hnich. We can understand, how it followed after solitaiy prayer 
by Christ ^ — we can scarcely doubt, for that very revelation by the " 
Father, which He afterwards joyously recognised in the words of 

The reply of the Saviour is only recorded by St. Matthew. Its 
mission by St. Mark might be explained on the ground that 
t. Peter himself had furnished the information. But its absence 
tere and in the Gospel of St. Luke ' proves (as Beza remarks), that 
could never have been intended as the foundation of so important 
doctrine as that of the permanent supremacy of St. Peter. But 
''en if it were such, it would not follow that this supremacy 
evolved on the successors of St. Peter, nor yet that the Pope of Rome 
1 the successor of St. Peter ; nor is there even solid evidence that 
■t. Prter ever was Bishop of Rome. The dogmatic inferences from 
certain interpretation of the words of Christ to Peter being there- 
ore utterly untenable, we can, with less fear of bias, examine their 
'leaning. The whole form here is Hebraistic. The ' blessed art 
'Don ' is Jewish in spirit and form ; the address, * Simon bar Jona,' 
t>tovee that the Lord spake in Aramaic. Indeed, a Jewish Messiah 
'^spending, in the hoiu* of His Messianic acknowledgment, in Greek 
to Hit Jewish confessor, seems utterly incongruous. Lastly, the 
^^tpreBsioD * flesh and blood,' as contrasted with God, occurs not only 
in that Apocryphon of strictly Jewish authorship, the Wisdom of the 


Sonof Sirach,'and in the letters of St. Paul,''bnt in almost innamerable 
pasEages in Jewish writings, as denoting man in opposition to God ; 

., while the revelation of such a truth by 'the Father Which is in 
Heaven,' represents not only both Old and New Testament teaching, 
but is clothed in language familiar to Jewish ears {D?03'3C' W3?). 

Not less Jewish in form are the succeeding words of Christ : 
' Thou art Peter {Petros), and upon this Rock (Petra) will I build 
my Church.' We notice in the original the change from the mas- 
cnline gender, ' Peter ' (Petros), to the feminine, ' Petra ' (' Rock '), 
which seems the more significant, that both Pefras and Petra are 
used in classical Greek for ' Rock ' or ' Stone.' The change of gen- 
der must therefore have some definite object. When Peter first 
came to Christ, the Lord had said unto him : ' Thou shalt be called 
Cephas, which is, by interpretation, Peter [a Rock]'" — the Aramaic 
word Cephas (Cp'.S, or np'5) corresponding to the Greek Pder, But 
both the Greek Petros and Petra have (as already stated) passed into 
Rabbinic language. Thus, the name Peter, or rather Petroa, is 
Jewish, and occurs, for example, as that of the father of a certain Rabbi 
(Jose bar Petros).'' When the ]jord, therefore, prophetically gave 

t the name Cephas, it may have been that by that term He gave only 
a prophetic interpretation to what had been his previons name, Peter 
(onc"!;). This seems the more likely, since, as we have previously 
seen, it was the practice in Galilee to have two names,' especially 
when the strictly Jewish name, such as Simon, had no equivalent 
among the Gentiles.' Again, the Greek word Petra—Rock — (' oa 
this Petra [Rock] will I build my Church ') was used in the same 
sense in Rabbinic language. It occurs twice in a passage, which so 
fully illustrates the Jewish use, not only of the word, but of the whole 
figure, that it deserves a place here. According to Jewish ideas, the 
world would not have been created, unless it had rested, as it were, 
on some solid foundation of piety and acceptance of God's Law — in 
other words, it required a moral, before it could receive a physical, 
foundation. Rabbinism here contrasts the Gentile world with Israel. 
It is, so runs the comment, as if n king were going to build a city. 
One and another site is tried for a foundation, but in digging they 
always come upon water. At last they come upon a Rock {PetrOy 
tfioa)' So, when God was about to build His world. He could not 
rear it on the generation of Enos, nor on that of the flood, who 

' Sec the remnrkson Matlhew-Levi in 

I. i. ob. rvii. p. GI4 ot this Book. 

' Tbu9, tor eiBmple, Andrew whs both 

'hrtpiai and 'JtlHm (Anderai) — 'i 
'brave,' Afamilv Anderai bmentign 
Jer. Chethab. S3 a. 


lironght destruction on the world ; but * when He beheld that 
Abraham would arise in the future, He said: Behold I have found a 
Rock (P^ra, mm) to build on it, and to found the wotld,' whence 
also Abraham is «illed a Bock (Zur, -^ix) as it is said : ■ ' Look unto ' 
the Bock whence ye are hewn.*'*' The parallel between Abraham j 
and Peter might be carried even further. If, from a mieonderatandiiig ' 
■of the Lord's promise to Peter, later Christian legend represented the ' 
Apostle as sitting at the gate of heaTen, Jewish legend represents * 
Abraham as sitting at the gate of Crehenna, bo as to prevent all who 
had the seal of circumcision ^om &lling into its abyss. °* To ' 
complete this sketch — in the curions Jewish legend about the 
Apostle Peter, which is outlined in the Appendix to this chapter,* 
Peter is always designated as Simon Kephas (spelt itc*p), there 
being, however, ^ome reminiscence of the meaning attached to his 
-name in the statement made, that, after his death, they built a church 
and tower, and called it Peter ("id»d1 ' which is the name for stone, 
because he sat there upon a stone till hia death ' {p{(n ^Jf nv ac'c)-* 

But to return. Believing, that Jesus spoke to Peter in the 
Aramaic, we can now understand how the words Petroa and Petra 
would he purposely used by Christ to mark the difference, which 
their choice would suggest. Perhaps it might be expressed in this 
somewhat clumsy paraphrase i ' Thou art Peter (Petros) — a Rock — 
md upon this Petra — the Petrine — will I found My Church.' If, 
therefore, we would not entirely limit the reference to the words of 
Peter's confession, we would certainly apply them to that which was 
tlw Petrine in Peter : the heaven-given faith which manifested itself 
in Us coofesdon." And we can further understand how, just as 
^^uvCb contemporaries may have regarded the world as reared on the 
wciof faithful Abraham, so Christ promised, that He would build His 
tlurch on the Petrine in Peter — on his faith and confession. Nor 
»oiild the term ' Church ' sound strange in Jewish ears. The same 
^k wOTd {iKicXijffta), as the equivalent of the Hebrew Kahalt 

'nMameaccDnin fhem. R. 15, only 
"■Utboe it is DOt odIj Abraham but 
'Ikbtben'who are 'the Rocka'C^be 
*ndiued there U not Petrahat Zar) OQ 
*km the world is founded. 

' Thete wtm a strange idea sbont 
Jwiih children who bad died uncircnm- 
id the sinners in Israel excbang- 
t petition in regard to circnm- 
Conld this, only ipiritnallj 
aodaad applied, have been present 
W Un mind of St. Paul when be wrote 

BoraaoB ii. 26, 26, last claages 1 

• Bee Appendii XVUI. 

" The reader will have no difficulty in 
rocogniaing a reference to the See of 
Rome, perhaps 'the Chair of Pt. Peter,' 
miied tip with the meaning of the name 
of Peter, 

' The other riawa of the words are 
(a) that Christ pointed to Himself as tho 
Rock, (ft) or to I'eteraaaperson, (e)ot to 
Peter's confetsion. 


' coDVOcatioB,' 'the called,'' occurs in the LXX, rendering of the- 
Old Testament, and in * the Wisdom of the Son of Sirach,' ■ and it 
was apparently in familiar use at the time.'' In Hebrew use it 
referred to Israel, not in their national but in their religions unity. 
■ As here employed, it would convey the prophecy, that Hia dificipleS' 
would in the future be joined together in a religious unity; that this 
religious unity or ' Church ' would be a building of which ChriBt was 
the Builder ; that it would be founded on * the Fetrine ' of heaven- 
taught &ith and confesBion ; and that this religious unity, Uu> 
Church, waa not only intended for a time, like a school of thou^t, 
but would last beyond death and the disembodied state : that, alike as 
regarded Christ and His Church — * the gates of Hades ' shall not 
prevail against it.' 

Viewing ' the Church ' as a building founded upon ' the Petrine," 
it was not to vary, but to carry on the same metaphor, when Chiirt 
pronused to give to him who had spoken as representative of tbe 
Apostles — * the stewards of the mysteries of God ' — ' the keys d the 
Kingdom of Heaven.' For, as the religious unity of His disciples, a 
the Church, represented ' the royal rule of heaven,' so, figuratively, 
entrance into the gates of this building, submission to the rule of God- 
to that Kingdom of which Christ was the King. And we remember 
how, in a special sense, this promise was fulfilled to Peter. Evenu 
he had been the first to utter the confession of the Church, so WM is 
also privileged to be the first to open its hitherto closed gates to the 
Gentiles, when God made choice of him, that, through his mouth, the 
Gentiles should first hear the words of the Gospel,' and at hi* 
bidding first be baptized.'' | 

If hitherto it has appeared that what Christ said to Peter, thon^ 
infinitely transcending Jewish ideas, was yet, in iU expression toA 
even cast of thought, such as to be quite intelligible to Jewish 
minds, nay, so familiar to them, that, as by well marked steps, they 
might ascend to the higher Sanctuary, the difficult words with whio** 
our Lord closed must be read in the same light. For, assuredly* 
in interi>reting such a saying of Christ to Peter, our first inqni^ 
must be, what it would convey to the person to whom the promi** 
was addressed. And here we recall, that no other terms were in moT* 

* The other word is Jidah. Comp. Bible shadow only failure. 
Hist. vol. ii. p. 177, note. ' Those who apply the words 'npt y^ 

' It is importnot to notice thttt the this Kock, &c'to Peter or to Chriftimri^^ 

word is Hodct, and Dot Gtkenna. feel, that they introdace an abrapt w^^ 

Dean PlumptTe calls attention to the inelpfcant transition from one &pm b^^ 

wonderful character of Buoh a prophecy aootlier. 
«t a time when all around seemed to Core- 


-constant use in Babbinic Canon-law than those of ^ binding ' and chap 

* loosing.' The words are the literal translation of the Hebrew xxxvii 

equivalents Asar ('^), which means *to bind,' in the sense of ' ^ — ' 

prohibiting, and Hitti/r (i^J^D, from ■«[)}) which means * to loose,' in 

the sense of permitting. For the latter the term Shera or Sheri 
iyr/^^ or n?^) is also used. But this expression is, both in Tar- 
gumic and Talmudic diction, not merely the equivalent of per- 
mitting, but passes into that of remitting, or pardoning. On the 
other hand, ' binding and loosing ' referred simply to things or actsy 
prohibiting or else permitting them, declaring them lawfiil or un- 
lawful. This was one of the powers claimed by the Rabbis. As 
regards their laws (not decisions as to things or acts), it was a 
principle, that while in Scripture there were some that bound and 
some that loosed, all the laws of the Rabbis were in reference to 

* binding.'* If this then represented the legislative^ another preten- J^^j^''- 
Bion of the Rabbis, that of declaring * free ' or else * liable,' i.e., guilty m<«- 'i « 
{J^aiwr or Ckajov\ expressed their claim to the jvdidal power. By 

the first of these they * bound ' or * loosed ' acts or things ; by the 
second they ' remitted ' or * retained,' declared a person free from, 
or liable to punishment, to compensation, or to sacrifice. These 
two powers — the legislative and judicial — which belonged to the 
Babbinic office, Christ now transferred, and that not in their preten- 
rion, but in their reality, to His Apostles : the first here to Peter as 
their Representative, the second after His Resurrection to the Church.'* " st .Toim 

On the second of these powers we need not at present dwell. 
That of * binding ' and * loosing ' included all the legislative functions 
fer the new Church. And it was a reality. In the view of the 
^bbis heaven was like earth, and questions were discussed and 
^ttled by a heavenly Sanhedrin. Now, in regard to some of their 
^^rthly decrees, they were wont to say that * the Sanhedrin above ' 
^^^^Jifirmed what * the Sanhedrin beneath ' had done. But the words 
^'Christ, as they avoided the foolish conceit of His contemporaries, 
^®ft it not doubtful, but conveyed the assurance that, under the 
Piidance of the Holy Ghost, whatsoever they bound or loosed on 
*^h would be bound or loosed in heaven. 

But all this that had passed between them could not be matter 
^ common talk — least of all, at that crisis in His History, and in 
"^t locality. Accordingly, all the three Evangelists record — each 
^th distinctive emphasis * — that the open confession of His Messiah- 

the word used by St. Matthew (Jic- St. Mark (^ir€Tf/AT?<r€v) implies rebuke ; 
•'^UiT^) means • charged ; ' that by while the expression employed by St, 


BOOK ship, which was virtually its proclamation, was not to be made puUii 
"^ Among the people it could only have led to results the opposite 

those to be desired* How unprepared even that Apostle was, wi^c 
had made proclamation of the Messiah, for what his confession 
implied, and how ignorant of the real meaning of Israel's Messialv 
appeared only too soon. For, His proclamation as the Christ im- 
posed on Him, so to speak, the necessity of setting forth the mode of 
His contest and victory — ^the Cross and the Crown. Such teachiof 
was the needed sequence of Peter's confession — ^needed, not only for 
the correction of misunderstanding, but for direction. And yet it 
is significantly said, that * He began ' to teach them these things- 
no doubt, as regarded the manner ^ as well as the time of this teaching. 
The Evangelists, indeed, tell it out in plain language, as fully iajj^i 
them by later experience, that He was to be rejected by the rolen 
of Israel, slain, and to rise again the third day. And there can be 
as little doubt, that Christ's language (as afterwards they looked 
back upon it) must have clearly implied ^1 this, as that at the time 
they did not fully understand it.* He was so constantly in the 
habit of using symbolic language, and had only lately reproved 
them for taking that about * the leaven ' in a literal, which He 
meant in a figurative sense, that it was but natural, they should 
have regarded in the same light announcements which, in their 
strict literality, would seem to them well-nigh incredible. They 
could well understand His rejection by the Scribes — a sort of figuia-— 
tive death, or violent suppression of His claims and doctrines, aao 
then, after briefest period, their resurrection, as it were — ^but bo* 
the terrible details in their full literality. 

But, even so, there was enough of terrible realism in the worci-* 
of Jesus to alarm Peter. His very affection, intensely human, to tl»-* 
Human Personality of His Master would lead him astray. Th^ 
He, Whom he verily believed to be the Messiah, Whom he love^^ 
with all the intenseness of such an intense nature — ^that He shouJ-'' 
pass through such an ordeal — No ! Never ! He put it in the vec:^ 
strongest language, although the Evangelist gives only a liter^ 
translation of the Kabbinic expression ^ — God forbid it, ^Ood \^ 

Luke (^iriTi/i^<roj owtoTj irof)^^€iAc) con- on thee/ is the exact transcript of Ui^ 
veys both rebuke and command. Rabbinic Chat lecha (^ DTI)* 

> Otherwise they could not a^rwards 2:^^^, Neuhebr. Worterb. vol. iL p. 8^ 

have been in such doubt about His Death rphe commoner expression is Cku ^ 

and Resurrection. Shalom, * mercy and peace,' vii. be tp^ 

* It is very remarkable that the ex- ^^^^ ^^^ ^^le meaning is, God forbid, C0 

pression, t\€^s <roi, literaUy * have mercy ck)d avert, a thing or its oontiniiftnce. 


mercifiil to Thee:'^ no, such never could, nor should be to the chap. 
Christ ! It was an appeal to the Human in Christ, just as Satan had, in xxxvu 
the great Temptation after the forty days' fiast, appealed to the purely ' * 
Human in Jesus. Temptations these, with which we cannot reason, 
bat which we must put behind us as behind^ or else they will be a 
stumbling-block before us; temptations, which come to us often 
through the love and care of others, Satan transforming himself 
into an Angel of light ; temptations, all the more dangerous, that 
they appeal to the purely human, not the sinful, element in us, but 
ivhich arise firom the circumstance, that they who so become our 
stumbling-block, so long as they are before us, are prompted by an 
affection which has regard to the purely human, and, in its one- 
sided human intenseness, minds the things of man, and not those 

Yet Peter's words were to be made useful, by aflFording to the 
Master the opportunity of correcting what was amiss in the hearts 
of all His disciples, and teaching them such general principles 
about His Kingdom, and about that implied in true discipleship, as 
would, if received in the heart, enable them in due time victoriously 
to bear those trials connected with that rejection and Death of the 
Christ, which at the time they could not understand. Not a Mes- 
^c Kingdom, with glory to its heralds and chieftains — but self- 
denial, and the volimtary bearing of that cross, on which the powers 
of this world would nail the followers of Christ. They knew the 
^ure which their masters — the power of the world — the Romans, 
^ere wont to inflict : such must they, and similar must we all, be 
P^pared to bear,' and, in so doing, begin by denying self. In such 

* contest, to lose life would be to gain it, to gain would be to lose 
'ife. And, if the issue lay between these two, who could hesitate 
^hat to choose, even if it were ours to gain or lose a whole world ? 
for behind it all there was a reality — a Messianic triumph and 
Kingdom — not, indeed, such as they imagined, but far higher, holier : 
the Coming of the Son of Man in the glory of His Father, and with 

Hifl Angels, and then eternal gain or loss, according to our deeds.* "Jl'^^ 

But why speak of the future and distant ? ' A sign ' — a terrible 
sign of it * from heaven,' a vindication of Christ's * rejected ' claims, 

* vindication of the Christ, Whom they had slain, invoking His 

* 80 the Greek literally. cross ; in ours, it is suffering not less acute, 

* In those days the extreme suffering the greatest which one hostile power can 
^Hdcha man might expect from the hos- inflict : really, though perhaps not lite- 
tik power (the Romans) was the literal rally, a cross. 





•St. Matt. 

Blood on their City and Nation, a vindication, such as alone thes^j 
men could understand, of the reality of His Resurrection and Ascen-^ 
sion, was in the near future. The flames of the City and Tempi-. 4 
would be the Ught in that nation's darkness, by which to read th« 
inscription on the Cross. All this not afar off. Some of those who 
stood there would not * taste death,' * till in those judgments they 
would see that the Son of Man had come in His Kingdom.* 

Then — only then — at the burning of the City ! Why not now, 
visibly, and immediately on their terrible sin ? Because God shows 
not ^ signs from heaven ' such as man seeks ; because His long- 
suffering waiteth long ; because, all unnoticed, the finger moves on 
the dial-plate of time till the hour strikes ; because there is Divine 
grandeur and majesty in the slow, unheard, certain night-march of 
events under His direction. God is content to wait, because He 
reigneth ; man must be content to wait, because he believeth. 

* This is an exact translation of the 
phrase nfl^ DytDt which is of such very 
frequent occurrence in Rabbinic writings. 

See our remarks on St. John viiL 52 1 
Book IV. ch. viii. 

Book IV. 


' But god forb«de bnt men ahulde leve 
Wcl mora thiag then men hao Been with e;e 
Uen thai Dot weneD ener; thing a Ije 
Bot jf him-Helfo yt aeeth or slles doolh 
For god wot thing is nener the luso EOOlh 
Thogh vaerj wight ne may it nat j-eee.' 

CuiccxH : Prologue to the Ltgead of Good Wonun. 



(St. Matt. zrii. 1-8 ; Bt. Muk iz. 2-S ; St. Luke iz. 28-36.) 

The great eonfesBion of Peter, as the representative Apostle, had laid chap. 
'^e foundations of the Church as such. In contradistinction to the i 
'u;ying opinions of even the best disposed towards Christ, it openly 
"declared that Jesus was the Very Christ of God, the fulfilment of 
*ll Old Testament prophecy, the heir of Old Testament promise, the 
•^^aJisatioB of the Old Testament hope for Israel, and, in Israel, for 
311 mankind. Without this coufeasion, Christians might have been 
3 Jewish sect, a religious party, or a school of thought, and Jesus a 
"etcher, Kabbi, Heformer, or Leader of men. But the confession 
"'hich marked Jesus as the Christ, also constituted His followers the 
plinrch. It separated them, as it separated Him, from all around j 
'^ gathered them into One, even Christ ; and it marked out the 
K*Hjidation on which the building made without hands was to rise. 
N"e7er was illustrative answer so exact as this : • On this Rock ' 
— -told, outstanding, well-defined, immovable — ' will I build My 

Without doubt this confession also marked the high-point of the 
"■posUea' faith. Never afterwards, till His Resurrection, did it reach 
**> high. Nay, nchat followed seems rather a retrogression from it : 
beginning with their unwillingness to receive the announcement of 
"^ Decease, and ending with their uoreadineas to share His suflFer- 
*ng» or to believe in His Resurrection. And if we realise the cir- 
'^onutances, we shall understand, at least, their initial diESculties. 
Their highest feith had been followed by the most crushing dis- 
I^Knntment ; the confession that He was the Christ, by the an- 
iKnacement of His approaching Sufferings and Death at Jerusalem. 
Tiie proclamation that He was the Divine Messiah had not been 
net by promises of the near glory of the Messianic Kingdom, bat 
I7 announcementB of certain, public rejection and seeming terrible 


BOOK defeat. Such possibilities had not seriously entered into theirj 
IV thoughts of the Messiah ; and the declaration of the very worst, am 
that in the near future, made at such a moment, must have been 
staggering blow to all their hopes. It was as if they had reached 
topmost height, only to be hurled thence into the lowest depth. 

On the other hand, it was necessary that at this stage in Htxe 
History of the Christ, and immediately after His proclamation, the 
sufferings and the rejection of the Messiah should be prominently 
brought forward. It was needful for the Apostles, as the remon- 
strance of Peter showed; and, with reverence be it added, it was 
needful for the Lord Himself, as even His words to Peter seem to 
imply : * Get thee behind Me ; thou art a stumbling-block unto Me.* 
For — as we have said — was not the remonstrance of the disciple in 
measure a re-enactment of the great initial Temptation by Satan 
after the forty days' fast in the wilderness ? And, in view of all this, 
and of what immediately afterwards followed, we venture to say, it 
was fitting that an interval of * six ' days should intervene, or, as St. 
Luke puts it, including the day of Peter's confession and the night of 
Christ's Transfiguration, * about eight days.' The chronicle of these 
days is significantly left blank in the Gospels, but we cannot doubt, 
that it was filled up with thoughts and teaching concerning that:^ 
Decease, leading up to the revelation on the Mount of Transfigurations- 
There are other blanks in the narrative besides that just referred-^ 
to. We shall try to fill them up, as best we can. Perhaps it was the 
Sabbath when Peter's great confession was made ; and the * six days ' 
of St. Matthew and St. Mark become the * about eight days ' of St. 
Luke, when we reckon from that Sabbath to the close of another, and 
suppose that at even the Saviour ascended the Mount of Transfigu- 
ration with the three Apostles : Peter, James, and John. There can 
scarcely be a reasonable doubt, that Christ and His disciples had not 
left the neighbourhood of Csesarea,' and hence, that * the mountain * 
must have been one of the slopes of gigantic, snowy Hermon. In 
that quiet semi-Gentile retreat of Caesarea Philippi could He best 
teach them, and they best learn, without interruption or temptation 
from Pharisees and Scribes, that terrible mystery of His Suffering. 
And on that gigantic mountain barrier which divided Jewish and 

^ According to an old tradition, Christ by St. Mark as after the Transfignmtioii 

had left Caesarea Philippi, and the scene (iz. 80) ; (3) Mount Tabor was at that 

of the Transfiguration was Mount Tabor, time crowned with a fortified city, wluch 

But (1) there is no notice of His de- would render it unsuitable for the wwie 

parture, such as is generally made by St. of the Transfiguration. 
Mark ; (2) on the contrary, it is mentioned 


Gentile laods, and while surveying, as Moses of old, the land to be 
occnpied in all itB extent, amidst the solemn solitude and majestic gran- 
deur of Hermon, did it seem most fitting that the Divine attests 
tion should be given, both by anticipatory fact and declaratory word, 
to the proclamation that He was the Messiah, and to this, that, in a 
world that is in the power of sin and Satan, God's Elect must suffer, 
tlutt so, by ransoming. He may conquer it to God. But what a 
background, here, for the Tranefiguration ; what surroundings for the 
Virion, what echoes for the Voice from heaven ! 

It was evening,' and, as we have suggested, the evening after the 
Sabbath, when the Master and those three of His disciples, linked 
doGest to Him in heart and thought, climbed the path that led up 
to one of the heights of Hermon. In all the most solemn transac- 
tions of earth's history, there has been this selection and separation 
of the few to witness God's great doings. Alone with his son, as the 
liestined sacrifice, did Abraham climb Moriah ; alone did Moses be- 
hold, amid the awful loneliness of the wilderness, the burning bush, and 
aloneon Sinai's height did he commune with God ; alone was Elijah 
st Eoreb, and with no other companion to view it than Elisha did 
he ascend into heaven. But Jesus, the Saviour of His people, could 
not be qnite alone, save in those innermost transactions of His soul : 
ID tile great contest of His first Temptation, and in the solitary com- 
fflnnings of His heart with God. These are mysteries which the out- 
spread wings of Angels, as reverently they hide their faces, conceal 
fr«a earth's, and even heaven's, vision. But otherwise, in the roost 
Gtdemn turning-points of this history, Jesus could not be alone, and 
fet vag alone with those three chosen ones, most receptive of Him, 
*odni06t representative of the Chiuch. It was soin the house of Jairus, 
"f^ the Mount of Transfiguration, and in the Garden of Gethsemane. 
Aa St. Luke alone informs us, it was ' to pray ' that Jesus took 
"lem apart up into that mountain. * To pray,' no doubt in connec- 
•Jon with ' those sayings ; ' since their reception required quite as 
Mnch the direct teaching of the Heavenly Father, as had the pre- 
*»iu confession of Peter, of which it was, indeed, the complement, 
tlK other aspect, the twin height. And the Transfiguration, with its 
tttendant glorified Ministry and Voice from heaven, was God's answer 
to that prayer. 

What has already been stated, has convinced us that it could not 
We been to one of the highest peaks of Hermon, as most modem 

' Tin* u implied not only in the disciples being heavy with sleep, but in the moru- 
hftotoe (8t. Lnke is. 37} which followed. 


BOOK writers suppose, that Jesus led His companions. There are threes 

^ such peaks : those north and south, of about equal height (9,4O0l 

feet above the sea, and nearly 1.1,000 above the Jordan valley), ar^ 
only 500 paces distant from each other, while the third, to the wes^ 
(about 100 feet lower), is separated from the others by a narro^r 
valley. Now, to climb the top of Hermon is, even from the nearest 
point, an Alpine ascent, trying and fatiguing, which would occupy a 
whole day (six hours in the ascent and four in the descent), and re- 
quire provisions of food and water ; while, from the keenness of the 
air, it would be impossible to spend the night on the top.* To all 
this there is no allusion in the text, nor slightest hint of either diffi- 
culties or preparations, such as otherwise would have been required. 
Indeed, a contrary impression is left on the mind. 

* Up into an high mountain apart,' * to pray.' The Sabbath-sun 
had set, and a delicious cool hung in the summer air, as Jesus and 
the three commenced their ascent. From all parts of the land, fcr 
as Jerusalem or Tyre, the one great object in view all their lives 
must have been snow-clad Hermon. And now it stood out before 
them — as, to the memory of the traveller in the West, Monte Bo» 
or Mont Blanc ^ — in all the wondrous glory of a sunset: first rose- 
coloured, then deepening red, next * the death-like pallor, and the 
darkness relieved by the snow, in quick succession.'' From high up 
there, as one describes it,* * a deep ruby flush came over all the 
scene, and warm purple shadows crept slowly on. The Sea of Gralilee 
was lit up with a delicate greenish-yellow hue, between its dim wall* 
of hill. The flush died out in a few minutes, and a pale, steel- 
coloured shade succeeded. ... A long pyramidal shadow slid dow^ 
to the eastern foot of Hermon, and crept across the great plain, j 
Damascus was swallowed up by it ; and finally the pointed end ^^ 
the shadow stood out distinctly against the sky — a dusky cone cs^^ 
dull colour against the flush of the afterglow. It was the shadow C^^ 
the mountain itself, stretching away for seventy miles across th^ 
plain — the most marvellous shadow perhaps to be seen anywher^^ 

The sun underwent strange changes of shape in the thick vapours 

now almost square, now like a domed temple — until at length i^ 
slid into the sea, and went out like a blue spark.' And overhead^ 

* Canon Triiftrani writes : * We were ' One of its names, Shenir (Dent, m,^ 

before long painfully affected by the rarity 9 ; Cant. iv. S : Ezek. xxvii. 6), means Mont-^ 

of tlie atmosphere/ In gcnend, our de- Blanc. In Rabbinic writings it is desig--^ 

scription is derived from Canon Trittram nated as the * snow-mountain.* 

(* Land of Israel '), Lieutenant Conder * Triatram, u. s., p. 807. 

(* Tent- Work in Palestine *), and Bddekcr- * Conder, u. s., vol. i. p. 264. 
Soni'it PaJiifltina, p. 354. 


shone ODt in the bine snmmer-ebj, one by one, the stars in Eastern chap. 
briltiancy. We know not the exact direction which the climbers I 

took, nw how far their journey went. But there is only one road 
that leads firom Ctesarea Philij^ to Hermon, and we cannot be mis- 
taken is following it. First, among vine-clad hills stocked with 
nmlberry, apricot^ and fig trees ; then, throagh corn-fields where the 
(««i tree sopplanta the fig; next, through oak coppice, and up rocky 
taiines to where the soil is dotted with dwarf shrubs. And if we 
ponoe the ascent, it still becomes steeper, till the first ridge of snow 
is crossed, after which turfy banks, gravelly slopes, and broad snow- 
^atehes alternate. The top of Hermon in summer — and it can only 
^ ascended in summer or autumn — ^is free from snow, but broad 
patches nm down the sides, expanding as they descend. To the 
Toy nmunit it is well earthed ; to fiOO feet below it, studded with 
ccnntiess plants, higher up with dwarf clomps.' 

Aa they ascended in the cool of that Sabbath evening, the keen 
moantun air must have breathed strength into the climbers, and 
the Kent of snow— for which the parched tongue would long in 
"unmer's heat ' — ^have refreahed them. We know not what part ■ r™T. ut, 
tnajhave been open to them of the glorious jianorama from Hermon, 
^bracing as it doea a great part of Syria &om the sea to Damascus, 
^ the Lebanon and the gorge of the Litany to the mountains of 
^b; or down the Jordan valley to the Dead Sea; or over Galilee, 
Stinaria, and on to Jeruaalem, and beyond it. But such darkneas as 
uiatof a gammer's night would creep on. And now the moon shone 
ont io dazzling splendour, cast long shadows over the mountain, and 
I lit 1^ the broad patches of snow, refiecting their brilliancy on the 
objects annmd. 

Oa that mountain-top ' He pmyed.' Although the text does not 
*Jp«sdy ftate it, we can scarcely doubt, that He prayed with them, 
Md rtill less, that He prayed for them, as did the Prophet for his 
tenant, when the city was surrounded by Syrian horsemen ; that 
his eyes might be opened to behold heaven's host — the ' fer more 
htia than could be against ua.'" And, with deep reverence be "sKinoTi. 
it nid, for Himself also did Jesus pray. For, as the pale moonlight 
ibone on the fields of anew in the deep passes of Hermon, ao did 
tie light of the coming night shine on the cold glitter of Death 
in the near future. He needed prayer, that in it Hia Soul might 
lie calm and still — perfect, in the unruffled quiet of His Self- 

' Osr deacription ia baaed on the gispMc occoont of the asceot by Canon Triitrant 




• St Matt. 
xrvi. 43 ; 
St. Mark 
xlT. 40 

»» St. Luke 

« St. Mat- 

d St. Mark 
• St Luke 

surrender, the absolute rest of His Faith, and the victory of 
Sacrificial Obedience. And He needed prayer also, as the introdi^^ 
tion to, and prex>aration for. His Transfiguration. Truly, He stc^^ 
on Hermon. It was the highest ascent, the widest prospect iato 
the past, present, and future, in His Earthly Life. Yet was it hut 
Hermon at night. And this is the human, or rather the Theantbro|U0 
view of this prayer, and of its sequence. 

As we understand it, the prayer with them had ceased, or it had 
merged into silent prayer of each, or Jesus now prayed alone and 
apart, when what gives this scene such a truly human and trutlifiil 
aspect ensued. It was but natural for these men of simple habitat at 
night, and after the long ascent, and in the strong mountain-air, to 
be heavy with sleep. And we also know it as a psychological bdf 
that, in quick reaction after the overpowering influence of the strangeat 
emotions, drowsiness would creep over their limbs and senses. * lley 
were heavy — weighted — with sleep,' as afterwards in Gethsenum^ 
their eyes were weighted. * * Yet they struggled with it, and it i 
quite consistent with experience, that they should continue in 
state of semi-stupor during what passed between Moses and Eli) 
and Christ, and also be * fully awake ' ^ * to see His Glory, and 
two men who stood with Him.' In any case this descriptive trait, 

far from being (as negative critics would have it), a * later embellisb " 

ment,' could only have formed part of a primitive account, since iti 
impossible to conceive any rational motive for its later addition.' 

What they saw was their Master, while praying, * transformed.' 
The *form of God' shone through the *form of a Servant;' *thi 
appearance of His Face became other,' ^ ^ it * did shine as the sun.'* 
Nay, the whole Figure seemed bathed in light, the very 
whiter far than the snow on which the moon shone ^ — * so as no full* 
on earth can white them,* ^ * glittering,' ® * white as the light.' 

' The word is the same. It also occars 
in a figurative sense in 2 Cor. i. 8 ; v. 4 ; 
1 Tim. V. 16. 

« Meyer strongly advocates the render- 
ing ; • but having kept awake.* See, how- 
ever, Godefs remarks ad loc. 

■ Meyer is in error in supposing that 
the tradition, on which 8t. Luke's account 
is founde<l, amplifies the narratives of St. 
Matthew and St. Mark. With Canon Cook 
I incline to the view of Re$ch, that, judg- 
ing from the style, &c., St. Luke derived 
this notice from the same source as the 
materials for the large portion from ch. 
ix. 61 to xviii. 17. 

* On the peculiar meaning of the word 




fiopifnj, comp. Bishop Lightfoat on 
pp. 127-133. 

* This expression of St. Luke, so 
from indicating embellishment of tiu 
other accounts, marks, if anything, 

* It is scarcely a Rabbinic paraBd 
hardly an illustration — that in BabUni^ 
writings also Moses* face before his dest^ 
is said to have shone as the siin, for tk-' 
comparison is a Biblical one. Such 
guage would, of course, bo familiar to 8 

' The words *as snow,' in St. Mar 
iz. 3, are, however, spnriouB — an 


more than this they saw and heard. They saw *with Him two chap. 
men,'* whom, in their heightened sensitiveness to spiritual phe- i 
oomena, they could have no difficulty in recognising, by such of •st.Luke" 
their conversation as they heard, as Moses and Elijah.^ The column 
-was now complete : the base in the Law ; the shaft in that Prophetism 
of ^which Elijah was the great Representative — in his first Mission, 
as fdlfilling the primary object of the Prophets : to call Israel back 
to God, and, in his second Mission, this other aspect of their work, to 
prepare the way for the Kingdom of God ; and the apex in Christ 
Hunself — a unity completely fitting together in all its parts. And 
they heard also, that they spake of * His Exodus — outgoing — which 
He was about to fulfil at Jerusalem.' ^ Although the term * Exodus,' »»st.Luke 
* outgoing,' occurs otherwise for * death,' * we must bear in mind 
its meaning as contrasted with that in which the same Evangelic 
writer designates the Birth of Christ, as His * incoming.'® In truth, ^"^^' ^ 
it implies not only His Decease, but its manner, and even His Kesur- 
recUon and Ascension. In that sense we can understand the better, 
as on the lips of Moses and Elijah, this about His fulfilling that 
Exodus: accomplishing it in all its fulness, and so completing Law 
" axicl Prc^hecy, type and prediction. 

And still that night of glory had not ended. A strange pecu- 
Parity has been noticed about Hermon in Hhe extreme rapidity 
^f the f(»rmation of cloud on the summit. In a few minutes a thick 
^^p forms over the top of the mountain, and as quickly disperses 
^^<1 entirely disappears.' * It almost seems as if this, like the 
'^^Tiral position of Hermon itself, was, if not to be connected with, 
y^t, 80 to speak, to form the background to what was to be enacted, 
^^iddenly a cloud passed over the clear brow of the mountain — not 
^^ ordinary, but *a luminous cloud,' a cloud uplit, filled with 
^g^t As it laid itself between Jesus and the two Old Testament 
""^^resentatives, it parted, and presently enwrapped them. Most 
Significant is it, suggestive of the Presence of God, revealing, yet 
^ncealing — a cloud, yet luminous. And this cloud overshadowed 
^ue disciples : the shadow of its light fell upon them. A nameless 
^*nor seized them. Fain would they have held what seemed for 
*^er to escape their grasp. Such vision had never before been 
^^hsafed to mortal man as had fallen on their sight; they had 
^^^j heard Heaven's converse ; they had tasted Angels' Food, the 

' OodH points out the emphatic meaning of otrivcs. 
' In some of the Apocrypha and Josephus^ as well as in 2 Pet. i. 1 5. 
* Omder, n. s. vol. i. p. 266. 
^OUn. H 


Bread of His Preeence. Could the vision not be perpetna 
least prolonged ? In the confusion of their terror they kc 
how otherwise to word it, than by an expression of ecstatic 
for the continuance of what they had, of their earnest re 
to do their little beat, if they could hut secure it — make boc 
the heavenly Visitants ' — and themselves wait in humble 
and reverent attention on what their dull heaviness had pn 
their enjoying and profiting by, to the full. They knew and 
' Lord ' — ' Habbi ' — ' Master ' — ' it is good for ue to be here 
they longed to have it ; yet how to secure it, their terror co 
suggest, save in the language of ignorance and semi-conscio 
fusion. ' They wist not what they said.' In presence of th 
nous cloud that enwrapt those glorified Saints, they spake & 
that darkness which compassed them about. 

And now the lighi>cloud was spreading ; presently its frii 
upon them.* Heaven's awe was upon them : for the touch 
heavenly strains, almost to breaking, the bond betwixt body ai 
' And a Voice came out of the cloud, saying. This is My B 
Son : hear Him.' It had needed only One other Testimony 
it all ; One other Voice, to give both meaning and music to wl 
been the subject of Moses' and Elijah's speaking. That Vo 
now come — not in testimony to any fact, but to a Person — 
Jesus as His ' Beloved Son,' * and in gracious direction to 
They heard it, falling on their faces in awestruck worship. 

How long the silence had lasted, and the last rays 
cloud had x>assed, we know not. Presently, it was a gentle toui 
roused them. It was the Hand of Jesus, as with words of < 
He reassured them : ' Arise, and be not afraid.' And as, st 
they looked round about them, they saw no man save Jesu 
The Heavenly Visitants had gone, the last glow of the light-clo 
faded away, the echoes of Heaven's Voice had died out. 
night, and they were on the Mount with Jesus, and with Jesu 

' Wvntehf (ad loc.) qaotea, as it seemB 
to me, very inaptly, the Rabbinic realistic 
idea of the folSlmcnt of Is. iv. B, B, that 
God would make for each of the rigliteous 
seven booths, varjir^ according to their 
meriW (Baba B. 75 a), or eUe one booth 
(oreach(Bemid. B. 2!, ed.Warsh.p.SBo), 
Surely, there can bo no simOarity between 
this and tiie words of Peter. 

' A comparison of the narratives l^veg 
on ue the impression, that ibe dLseiples 
also were touched by the cloud. I can- 

not agree with Gndet, that the 
depends on whether we adopt in 
ii. 34 the reading of the T. B. in 
that of the Aiex. ainois. 

' The more correct reading in 
seems to be ' Elect Son.' 

• St.Malthewadds.MnWhoml 
pleased.' The reason of this ( 
count is not didicnlt to understai 

* St. Mark indicates this by tb 
' And suddenly, when they lookc 


Is it tmth or falsehood ; was it reality or vision — or part of both, CSAP. 
yioB Transfigtmition- scene on Hermon? One thing, at least, must i 
\» evident : if it be a tme narrative, it cannot possibly describe a ' 

merely subjective vision without objective reality. But, in that case, 
itwonld be not only difficult, but impossible, to separate one part of 
tbeiutTTative — the appearance of Moses and Elijah — from the other, 
tin Tiansfiguration of the Lord, and to assign to the latter objective 
mlity,* while regarding the former as merely a vision. But is the 
seeotmttrae? It certainly represents primitive tradition, since it is 
not only told by all the three Evangelists, but referred to in 
2 Peter i. 16-18,* and evidently implied in the words of St. John, 
both in his Gospel,' and in the opening of his First Epistle. Few, if 'St-Jobnt 
My, would be so bold as to assert that the whole of this history had 
l)een invented by the three Apostles, who professed to have been its 
witnesseB. Nor conld any adequate motive be imagined for its 
invention. It could not have been intended to prepare the Jews for 
the Crucifixion of the Messiah, since it was to be kept a secret till 
*ft« His Resurrection ; and, after that event, it could not have been 
neoeawiy for the assurance of those who believed in the Resurrec- 
t'Mi, while to others it would carry no weight. Again, the special 
traits of this history are inconsistent with the theory of its invention. 
^ > l^end, the witueBses of such an event would not have been 
■^PfSBented as scarcely awake, and not knowing what they said. 
""Hifestly, the object would have been to convey the opposite im- 
Pf^on. Lastly, it cannot be too often repeated, that, in view of 
'ae manifold witness of the Evangelists, amply confirmed in all 
''•entiab by the Epistles — preached, lived, and bloodsealed by the 
P™oitive Church, and handed down as primitive tradition^the most 
''"'enable theory seems that which impntes intentional fraud to their 
[ "snatives, or, to put it otherwise, non-belief on the part of the 
■Wmtors of what they related. 

But can we imagine, if not ftaud, yet mistake on the part of 
tnese witnesses, so that an event, otherwise naturally explicable, 
""^t, through their ignorance or imaginativeness, assume the pro- 
portions of this narrative ? The investigation will be the more easy, 
"■St, as regards all the main features of the narrative, the three 

"ttoM pMt of the arpament is well bodied spirits have no kindof corporeity, 

J|*l«d ont by Mtyer, but his argoments ot tliat (bey cannot assume a visible ap- 

^ Kgarding ttie appearaiice of Moses pearance ? 

^ Qijab as meielf a vision, because the ■ Kvcn if that Epistle were not St. 

""'ttrat leaat had no resurrection -body, Peter's, it would still represent the most 

*" nry weak. Are ns Blue, that disem- ancient tradition. 



BOOK Evangelists are entirely agreed. Listead of examin 
IV various rationalistic attempts made to explain this li 
grounds, it seems sufficient for refutation to asl 
reader to make attempt at imagining any natural ev 
have been mistaken for what the eyewitnesses relate 
gelists recorded. 

There still remains the mythical theory of exph 

it could be supported, would be the most attractive 

a negative character. But we cannot imagine a 

some historical motive or basis for its origination. 

be in character — that is, congruous to the ideas j 

entertained. Such a history as that of the Tranj 

not have been a piure invention ; but if such or sim 

had existed about the Messiah, then such a legend 

intentional fraud, by a gradual accretion, gather arc 

Who was regarded as the Christ. And this is the 

so-called mythical theory. But all such ideas vanisl 

history. There was absolutely no Jewish expectancy 

bodied itself forth in a narrative like that of the 

To begin with the accessories — the idea, that the c 

was to be connected with that of the Messiah, rests 

exaggeration, but on a very dubious translation of 

• On Bx. rii. Jerusalem Targum.* * It is quite true, that the face 

when he came down from the Mount ; but, if this ii 

of the Transfiguration of Jesus, the presence of Elij; 

in point. On the other hand — to pass over other i 

anything more un-Jewish could scarcely be imagined 

crucified, or that Moses and Elijah should appear t 

Him on such a Death ! If it be suggested, that the 

represent the Law and the Prophets as bearing t( 

Dying of the Messiah, we fully admit it. Certainly, 

* Moses and the Messiah are compared, 
the one as coming from the desert, the 
other from Rome. * This one was brought 
oat by the leadership of the cloud, and 
that one shall be brought out by the 
leadership of the cloud, and the Memra 
of Jehovah will lead between both, and, 
they come — as I would render it — as one 
— i.e. the one as well as the other 
( VHnun mehalchin cuchada) ; while some 
render it, * they shall proceed together.' 
But I contend, that the context requires 
my rendering. Again, although the 
parallel ifl often drawn in Rabbinic 
writings between Moses and Elijah, I 

know only one passage 
one, in which tho\* ai 
days of the Messiah. ] 
(seven lines before tb 
to this effect, that, be 
this world given liis li 
fore in the ^Eon to coi 
send Elijah the propl 
come, Cheachath^ eith 
one,' the proof passii 
• the whirlwind ' there 
and *the storm' to 
one would rejir on su 
mj-thical origin of th» 


Testament and the trae idea concerning the Christ ; but equally CHAP, 
certainly, it waa not, and it is not, that of the Jews concerning the i 

If it IB impossible to regard this narrative as a fraud ; hopeless, to 
tttempt explaining it as a natnial event ; and utterly unaccountable, 
Then viewed in connection with contemporary thought or expectancy 
—in short, if all negative theories feil, let us see whether, and 
Ikht, on the supposition of its reality, it will fit into the general 
unitive. To begin with : if our previous investigations have rightly 
led OS up to this result, that Jesus was the Very Christ of Crod, then 
ftii event can scarcely be described as miraculous — at least in such 
t hiitoiy. If we would not expect it, it is certainly that which might 
iun been expected. For, first, it was (and at that time) a necessary 
•t^ in the Lord's History, viewed as the GoSpels present Him. 
Secondly, it was needful for Hia own strengthening, even as the 
Mimstiy of the Angels after the Temptation. Thirdly, it was ' good ' 
fe these three disciples to be there : not ouly for future witness, but 
for present help, and also with special reference to Peter's remon- 
strance against Christ's death-message. Lastly, the Voice from 
naiTen, in hearing of His disciples, was of the deepest importance. 
tWing after the announcement of His Death and Passion, it sealed 
(oat testimony, and, in view of it, proclaimed Him as the Prophet 
foWIiom Moses had bidden Israel hearken,* while it repeated the ■Dmt.r 
Wvenly utterance concerning Him made at His Baptism.^ "scMm 

Bat, for us all, the interest of this history lies not only in the '"■ ^' 
put; it is in the present also, and in the fiiture. To all ages it is 
^ the vision of the bush burning, in which was the Presence of 
'^' And it points us forward to that transformation, of which 
tnitot Christ was the pledge, when ' this corruptible ahaU put on 
incwmption.' As of old the beacon-fires, lighted firom hill to hill, 
aonoonced to them iar away from Jerusalem the advent of solemn 
lEast, so does the glory kindled on the Mount of Transfiguration 
Aine through the darkness of the world, and tell of the Resurrec- 

On Hennon the Lord and His disciples had reached the highest 
pint in this history. Henceforth it is a descent into the Valley of 
KmniliatioQ and Death I 

' Me t hM ftlao aptly pointed oat, that mTtbical theory. It coold only point to 
weiiJaiMtion of dlence on the disciples a real sTont, not to a myth. 
*t to thu cTtnt is Incompatible with the 





(St. Matt. xvii. 9-21 ; St. Mark ix. 9-29 ; St. Luke ix. 37-43.) 

I r was the early dawn of another summer's day when the Master and 
His disciples turned their steps once more towards the plain. Thej 
liad seen His Glory ; they had had the most solemn witness which, 
as Jews, they could have ; and they had gained a new knowledge rf 
the Old Testament. It all bore reference to the Christy and it spake 
of His Decease. Perhaps on that morning better than in the pre- 
vious night did they realise the vision, and feel its calm happiness. 
It was to their souls like that morning-air on the mountain which 
they breathed. 

It would be only natural, if their thoughts also wandered to tb^ 
companions and fellow-disciples whom, on the previous evening, they 
had left in the valley beneath. How much they had to tell thenr^ 
and how glad they would be of the tidings they would hear I Th^* 
one night had for ever answered so many questions about that mxp^ 
hard of all His sayings : concerning His Rejection and violent DeaiJ^ 
at Jerusalem ; it had shed heavenly light into that terrible glocHf- • 
They — at least these three — had formerly simply submitted to tl*-^ 
saying of Christ because it was His, without understanding it; b*** 
now they had learned to see it in quite another light. How th^y 
must have longed to impart it to those whose difficulties were ^ 
least as great, perhaps greater, who perhaps had not yet recover^^ 
from the rude shock which their Messianic thoughts and hop^* 
had so lately received. We think here especially of those, ifhot^^ 
so far as individuality of thinking is concerned, we may designa*^ 
as the representative three, the counterpart of the three choB^^ 
Apostles: Philip, who ever sought firm standing-ground for fiutS*^ 
Thomas, who wanted evidence for believing; and Judas, whjO^ 
biiming Jewish zeal for a Jewish Messiah had already begun ^g, 
consume his own soul, as the wind had driven back upon himei^'^ 
the flame that had been kindled. Every question of a PhilJi^ 


c:*very doubt of a Thomas, e\ory despairing wild outburst of a Judas, 
XTould be met by what they had now to tell. 

But it was not to be so. Evidently, it was not an event to be 
Tnade generally known, either to the people or even to the great body 
of the discij)les. They could not have understood its real meaning ; 
they would have misunderstood, and in their ignorance misapplied 
to carnal Jewish purposes, its heavenly lessons. But even the rest 
of the Apostles must not know of it : that they were not qualified 
to witness it, proved that they were not prepared to hear of it. We 
cannot for a moment imagine, that there was favouritism in the 
selection of certain Apostles to ^hare in what the others might not 
witness. It was not because these were better loved, but because 
they were better prepared' — more fiilly receptive, more readily acqui- 
escing, more entirely self-surrendering. Too often we commit in 
our estimate the error of thinking of them exclusively as Apostles, 
not as disciples ; as our teachers, not as His learners, with all the 
fEulings of men, the prejudices of Jews, and the unbelief natural to 
Txs all, but assuming in each individual special forms, and appearing 
^ characteristic weaknesses. 

And 80 it was that, when the silence of that morning-descent was 
broken, the Master laid on them the command to tell no man 
of thifl vision, till after the Son of Man were risen from the dead. 
This mysterious injunction of silence aflfords another presumptive 
evidence against the invention, or the rationalistic explanations, or the 
mythical origin of this narrative. It also teaches two further lessons. 
The silence thus enjoined was the first step into the Valley of Humili- 
ation. It was also a test, whether they had understood the spiritual 
teaching of the vision. And their strict obedience, not questioning 
^^etithe grounds of the injunction, proved that they had learned it. 
^ entire, indeed, was their submission, that they dared not even 
^ the Master about a new and seemingly greater mystery than 
they had yet heard : the meaning of the Son of Man rising from 
the Dead. Did it refer to the general Eesurrection ; was the Messiah 
^ be the first to rise firom the dead, and to waken the other sleepers 
"^ was it only a figurative expression for His triumph and vindi- 
cation ? Evidently, they knew as yet nothing of Christ's Personal 
^^'nrrection, as separate from that of others, and on the third day 
•fter His Death. And yet it was so near ! So ignorant were they, 
^ 80 unprepared ! And they dared not ask the Master of it. This 

, ^Tiile writing this, we fully remem- • whom Jesus loved * specially, even in that 
^ iboat the title of St. John as he inner and closer circle. 


mach they bad already learned : not to question the mysteries of 
the future, but simply to receive them. But in their inmost hearts 
they kept that saying — aa the Virgin-Mother had kept many a like 
saying — carrj'ing it about ' with them ' aa a precious living germ 
that would presently Bpring up and bear fruit, or as that which would 
kindle into light and cliase all darkness. But among themselves, 
then and many times afterwards, in secret converse, they questioned 
what the rising again from the dead should mean, 

There was another question, and it they might ask of Jesus, since 
it concerned not the mysteries of the future, but the lessons of die 
past. Thinking of that vision, of the aj^pearance of Elijah and of 
his speaking of the Death of the Messiah, why did the Scribes say 
that Elijah should first come — and, as was the imiversal teaching, for 
the purpose of restoring all things ? If, as they had seen, Elijah 
had come- — but only for a brief season, not to abide, along with 
Moses, as they had fondly wished when they proposed to rear them 
booths ; if he had come not to the people but to Christ, in view of 
only them three — and they were not even to tell of it; and, if it had 
been, not to preimre for a sjiiritual restoration, but to speak of 
what implied the opixisite: the Rejection and violent Death of the 
Messiah — then, were the Scribes right in their teaching, and what 
was its real meaning? The question iiEForded the opportunity of 
presenting to the disciples not only a solution of their difficulties, 
but another insight into the necessity of His Rejection and DeatJi. 
They had failed to distinguish between the coming of Elijah and it« 
alternative sequence. Truly ' Elias cometh first ' — and Elijah had 
* come already ' in the person of John the Baptist. The Divinely 
intended object, of Elijah's coming waa to ' restore all things.' This, 
of course, implied a moral element in popular submission to God, 
and willingness to receive his message. Otherwise there was this 
Divine alternative in the prophecy of Malacbi : ' Lest I come to 
smite the land with the ban ' (Clierem). Elijah fiad come ; if the 
people had received his message, there would have been the pro- 
mised restoration of all things. As the Lord had said on a previous 
occasion"; ' If ye are willing to receive hivi,' this is Elijah, which is 
to come,' Similarly, if Israel had received the Christ, He would 
have gathered them as a hen her chickens for jirotection ; He would 
have not only been, but visibly appeared as, their King. But Israel 
did not know their Elijah, and did unto him whatsoever they listed ; 
and BO, in logical sequence, would the Son of Man also suffer of 
' The meajiiBg remains sabetantially the BBme whether we insert ' him ' or ' i 


them. And thna haa the other part of Malachi's prophecy been 
fal611ed : and the land of iBrael been smitten with the ban.' 

Amidat such converBation the descent from the mountain was 
accomplished. Presently they found themselves in viev of a scene, 
-which only too clearly showed that unfitness of the disciples for the 
heavenly vision of the preceding night, to which reference haa been 
made. For, amidst the divergence of details between the narratives 
of St, Matthew and St. Mark, and, eo far aa it goes, that of St. Luke, 
the one point in which they almost literally and emphatically accord 
is, when the Lord speaks of them, in language of bitter disappoint- 
ment and sorrow, as a generation with whose want of faith, notwith- 
standing all that they had seen and learned, He had still to bear, 
expressly attributing * their foJlure in restoring the lunatick to their * 
' onbelief.' * * 

It was, indeed, a terrible contrast between the aceue below and 
that vision of Moses and Elijah, when they had spoken of the Exodus 
of the Christ, and the Divine Voice had attested the Christ from out 
the luminous cloud. A concourse of excited people — among them 
once more * Scribes,' who had tracked the Lord and come upon Hia 
weakest disciples in the hour of their greatest weakness— is gathered 
abont a man who bad in vain brought his lunatick son for healing. 
He is eagerly questioned by the multitude, and moodily answers; or, 
as it might almost seem from St. Matthew," he is leaving the crowd " 
and those from whom he had vainly sought help. This was the hour 
of triumph for these Scribes. The Master had refused the challenge 
in Dalmanutha, and the disciples, accepting it, had sigoally failed. 
There they were, ' questioning with them ' noisily, discussing this 
and all similar phenomena, but chiefly the power, authority, and 
reality of the Master. It reminds us of lamel's temptation in the 
wilderness, and we should scarcely wonder, if they had even ques- 
tioned the return of Jesus, as they of old did that of Moses. 

At that very moment, Jesus appeared with the three. We can- 
not wonder that, ' when they saw Him, they were greatly amazed,' 
and nmning to Him saluted Him.'" He came — as always, and ' 
to na also — unexpectedly, most opportunely, and for the real decision 

□ St. an- 


'The question, whether there ia to be 
> ben] reappeai^nce of Elijah before 
■I* Second Advent ot Christ Hoes not 
"■n to b« aoBweied in the present pa«- 
y ^Brhapa it ia pnrpoaelj- left oaan- 

' "Ok Kading ' little taUb ' instead of 
QWi^' tlwi^h highlf attested, seenu 

only an early correction. On internal 
grounds it is more likely, that the cipres- 
sion ' little faith ' is a correction by a laler 
apologete, than 'unbelief.' The latter also 
corresponds to ' faithless generation.' 

* There is no hint in the text, that their 
amazement was due to the shining ot His 



of the question in hand. There vas immediate calm, preceding 
victory. Before the blaster's inquiry aix>ut the cause of this \-ioIent 
diacussioD ' could be answered, the man who had been its occasion 
came forward. With lowHest gesture (' kneeling to Him ' ') he 
addressed Jesus, At last he had found Him, ^\Tiom he had come to 
seek ; and, if possibility of help there were, oh ! let it. be granted. 
Describing the symptoms of his son's distemper, whieh were those 
of epilepsy and mania — although both the father and Jesus rightly 
attributed the disease to demoniac influence — he told, how he bod 
come in search of the Master, but only found the nine disciples, and 
how they had presumptuously attempted, and signally failed in the 
attempted cure. 

MTiy had they failed ? For the same reason, that they had not 
been taken into the Mount of Transfiguration — because they were- 
' felthless,' because of their ' unbeUef.' They had that oatwaid 
faith of the ' probatum eat ' (* it is proved ') ; they believed becauM^ 
and what, they bad seen ; and they were drawn closer to Chrut — 
at least almost all of them, though in varying measure — as to Him 
Who, and 'Who alone, spake ' the words of eternal life,' which, with 
wondrous power, had swayed their souls, or laid them to heaven's rest. 
But that deeper, truer faith, which consisted iu the spiritual view of 
that which was the unseen in Christ, and that higher power, which 
flows from such apprehension, they had uot. In such faith as they 
had, they spake, repeated forms of exorcism, tried to imitate their 
Master. But they signally failed, as did those seven Jewish Priest- 
sons at Ephesus. And it was intended that they should fail, that so 
to them and to us the higher meaning of faith as contrasted with 
l>ower, the inw;ird as contrasted with the merely outward qualifica- 
tion, might appear. In that hour of crisis, in the presence of ques- 
tioning Scribes and a wondering populace, and in the absence of the 
Christ, only one power could prevail, that of spiritual faith ; and ' that 
kind ' could ' not come out but by prayer.' ' 

It is this lesson, viewed also in organic connection with all that 
had happened since the great temptation at Dalmanutha, which fur- 
nishes the explanation of the whole history. For one moment we 
have a glimpse into the Saviour's soul : the poignant sorrow of His 
disappointment at the unbeUef of the ' faithless and perverse geneia- 


' In St. Mark ix. 18 the betmr reafUng 
is, 'He asked theia,' and not, lui in the 
T. B., 'IheScribBs.' 

» The additiou of the woid 'faaling ' 
in 8t. Ms'k IB probably apurious. ICre^ 

like a later gloia. It is uot unlikely, tluU 
St. Matt. nviL 31 is merely u 
iuBertioii from St. Mark. Howe^ 
ifeifer on this point. 


tioa ' ', with which Ha had so long borne ; the infinite patience and 
fxtudescension, the Divine ' need be ' of His having thus to bear even 
with His own, together with the deep humiliation and keen pang 
which it iorolved ; and the almost home-longing, as one has called 
it,* of His soul. These are mysteries to adore. The next moment 
Jesus turns Him to the father. At His command the lunatick is 
brought to Him. In the Presence of Jesus, and in view of the 
coming contest between Light and Darkness, one of those paroxysms 
of demoniac operation ensues, snoh as we have witnessed on all 
similar occasions. This was allowed to pass in view of all. But 
both this, and the question as to the length of time the lunatick 
had been afflicted, together with the answer, and the description of 
the dangers involved, which it elicited, were evidently intended to 
ptnnt the lesson of the need of a higher faith. To the father, 
however, who knew not the mode of treatment hy the Heavenly 
Physician, they seemed like the questions of an earthly healer who 
must consider the symptoms before he could attempt the cure. ' If 
Thon canst do anything, have compassion on us, and help us.' 

It was but natural — and yet it was the turning-point in this whole 
hietoiy, alike as regarded the healing of the lunatick, the better 
leading of his father, the teaching of the disciples, and that of the 
moltitude and the Scribes. There is all the calm majesty of Divine 
self-consciousness, yet without trace of self-assertion, when Jesus, 
utterly ignoring the ' if Thou canst,' turns to the man and tells him 
that, while with the Divine Helper there is the possibility of all help, 
it is conditioned by a possibility in ourselves, by man's receptiveness, 
by bis faith. Not, if the Christ can do anything or even everything, 
but, ' If thou canst believe,' all things are possible to him that be- 
lieveth.' * The question is not, it can never be, as the man had put 
it; it must not even be answered, but ignored. It must ever be, not 

' IlieeipreaaioD 'generation,' although 
embiaeiiig in its reproof all the people, 
ii ^>ed»llV addreased to the disciples. 
' dedet. 

' Tha weight of the evidence from the 
llEG. Kcepted by most modem critiCB 
(UoBgh not by that very judicions com- 
nutttor. Canon Cook) ia in faconr of the 
'^ding tud reodering : ' If Thou canst I 
U thinn aie possible,' Jco. But it seems 
]* ȣ, uat this mode of reply on the pait 
*'> Qniit ia not only without any other 
HnHd in the Qogpels, bnt too artificial, 
"" Veiteni, if I may nae the exptes- 
"«■ While the age of a MS. or MBB. is. 

of coarse, one of the outward gronnds on 
which the criticism ot the text most pro- 
ceed, I confess to the feeling tliat, as age 
and purity are not identical, the interpreter 
must weigh all such evidence in the light 
of the internal grounds for or against its 
reception. Besides, in this instance, it 
setjms to mo that there is some difficulty 
about the ri, if irirTriEoai ia Blruck out, 
and which is not so easily cleared up as 
Met/er suggests. 

■ ' Omnipotentis Divimc se fides homi- 
nis, quasi organon, accommodat, ad reci[n. 
endnm, vel etiam ad agendnm.' — Bmgel. 


BOOK what ffe can, but what we can. When the infinite fulnesa is poured 
IV forth, as it ever is in Christ, it is not the oil that is stayed, but the 
' vessels which fail. He giveth richly, inexhaustibly, but not me- 

chanically ; there is only one condition, the moral one of the presence 
of absolute faith — our receptiveness. And so this has to all time 
remained the teaching to every individual etriver in the battle of the 
higher life, and to the Church as a whole ; this, the ' in hoc aigno 
viTicea ' ' over the Cross, the victory that overcometh the world, even 
our faith. 

It was a lesson, of which the reality was attested by the hold 
which it took on the man's whole nature. While by one great out- 
going of his soul he overleapt all, to lay hold on that one fact set 
before him, he felt all the more the dark chasm of unbelief behind 
him, but also clung to that Christ, Whose teaching of faith had shown 
him, with the possibility, the source, of faith. Thus through 
the felt unbelief of faith he attained true faith by laying hold on 
the Divine Saviour, when he cried out and said : * ' Lord, I believe ; 
help Thou mine unbelief.' ' These words have remained historic, 
marking all true faith, which, even as faith, is conscious of, nay im- 
plies, imbelief, but brings it to Christ for help. The most bold leap 
of faith and the timid resting at His Feet, the first beginning and 
the last ending of faith, have alike this as their watchword. 

Such cry could not be, and never is, unheard. It was real de- 
moniac influence which, continuing with this man from childhood 
onwards, had well-nigh crushed all moral individuality in him, la 
his many lucid intervals these many years, since he had grown &om 
a child into a youth, he had never sought to shake off the yoke and 
regain his moral individuality, nor would he even now ha\'e come, if 
his father had not brought him. If any, this narrative shows the 
view which the GosjjelB and Jesus took of what are described aa the 
' demonised.' It was a reality, and not accommodation to Jewish 
views, when, as He saw 'the multitude running together. He rebuked 
the unclean spirit, saying to hira: Dumb and deaf spirit, I command 
thee, come out of Idm, and no more come into him.' 

Another and a more violent paroKyam, so that the bystanderB 
almost thought him dead. But the unclean spirit had come out of 

' ' In this sign sbait thou conqoer ' — the 
inscripi ion on tbe supposed vidon of tbc 
Cross bj the Eniperor Conatantine before 
hisgrent victoty and oonverBion to Christi- 

» Th« words 'witli teare,' in the T. R. 

MB apparently a spmions addition. 

■ Tba interpretation of Meyrr : ' I 
not withhold thy help, rotwithBtandil 
my nnbeliof ' Beems as jejune as fj 
others : ' Help me in my unbelief.' 

BOe as that OE 
^belief.' J 


turn. And with strong gentle Hand the Saviour lifted bim, and with 
loTing geatore delivered him to his finther. 

All things had been possible to iaitb ; not to that external belief 
of the disciples, which &iled to reach ' that kind,' ' and ever &ils to 
reach such kind, but to true spiritual faith in Him. And so it is to 
each of us individually, and to the Church, to all time. ' That kind,' 
— whether it be of sin, of lust, of the world, or of science falsely so 
called, of temptation, or of materialism — cometh not out by any of 
our ready-made formulas or dead dogmas. Not so are the flesh and 
the Devil vanquished ; not so is the world overcome. It cometh out 
by nothing but by prayer : ' Lord, I beheve j help Thou mine un- 
belief.' Ilien, although our &ith were only what in popular lan- 
guage was described as the smallest — ' like a grain of mustard-seed ' 
— and the result to be achieved the greatest, most difficult, seem- 
ingly transcending human ability to compass it — what in popular 
language was designated as ' removing mountains ' * — ' nothing shall 
be impossible ' wato us. And these eighteen centuries of suffering 
in Christ, and deliverance through Christ, and work for Christ, have 
proved it. For all things are ours, if Christ is ours. 

' Bnt it Ii nther too wide an application, 
wbeD EKtij/miiu Zygadtmit (one of the 
gitmt Bjiaiitiiietbeolc^iatisof the twelfth 
oratmy), and others after him, note ' the 
kind of all demons.' 

' The Babbinic use of the expression, 

* graio ot mnstard seed,' has already been 
noted. The expression 'tearing up' or 

• lemtning ' ' monntains ' was also prover- 

bial amoQfc t^o Rabbis. Thus, a great 
Babbi might be designated as one who 
■nproot«d mountaina' (Ber., last page, 
line 5 from top ; and HoiBJ. 14 a), or as 
one who pulverised them (tianh. 24 a). 
The ezpresaton also occurs of apparently 
impossible things, snch as those which a 
heathen government may order a man to 
do (Baba 1). 3 h). 




(SI. Matt. xvii. 22— zrUf . 22 ; St. Mark li. 30-50 ; Bt. Loka ix. 13-60.) 

Now thnt the Lord's retreat in the utmost borders of the land, 
nt Oii'ttnrea Philippi, was known to the Scribes, and that He wm 
Bjriiiii (lUiTounded and followed by the multitude, there could be no 
nirlhitr object in His retirement. Indeed, the time was coming that 
Mo hIiouUI meet that for which He had been, and was still, preparing 
I lit> inuulfl of His disciples — His Decease at Jerusalem, Accordingly, 
wo tliiil Him once more with His disciples in Gralilee — not to abide 
llliTt',' nor to traverse it as formerly for Missionary purpoeex, but 
ph'|«nit<)ry to His journey to the Feast of Tabernacles. The few 
nvcntH of this brief stay, and the teaching connected with it, may 
)hi Hiinimiid up as follows. 

I. Prominently, perhaps, as the summary of all, we have now 
tho clour nml emphatic repetition of the prediction of His Death and 
ItiiMiirrfction. \Vhile He would keep His present stay in Galilee as 
prlviito iiK jKisdible,' He would fain so emphasize this teaching to Hib 
ilim-iplcM, that it should sink down into their ears and memories. 
Knr il waK, indeed, the most needful for them in view of the imme- 
iliiilo fiituro. Yet the announcement only filled their loving hearts 
with oxcocding sorrow; they comprehended it not; nay, they were — 
nrrliiijii' n()t unnaturally — afraid to ask Him about it. We remember, 
Ihiit oven the three who had been with Jesus on the Monnt, under- 
hIihhI not what the rising from the dead should mean, and that, by 
ilii'tH'tion of the blaster, they kept the whole Vision from their 
I'l'tliiWHlisciplea ; and, thinking of it all, we scarcely wonder that, 
fiom lliiir standpoint, it was hid from them, so that they might not 


' 'I'lin i-\|in'?aiiin !n St. Matthew al)otle, but a, temporary stnj-— a going to 
nil. U2) iloo!! nut imply permanent utiil im. 


2. It is to the depreBsion caused by His insistence on this ter- chap. 
lible future, to the constant apprehension of near danger, and the ui 
consequent desire not to 'offend,' and so provoke those at whose ^ 

hands, Christ had told them. He was to suffer, that we trace the 
incident about the tribute-money. We can scarcely believe, that 
Peter would have answered as he did, without previous permission 
of his Master, had it not been for such thoughts and fears. It was 
another mode of saying, ' That be far from Thee ' — or, rather, trying 
to keep it as &r as he could from Christ. Indeed, we can scarcely 
repress the feeling, that there was a certain amount of secretiveness 
on the part of Peter, as if he had apprehended that Jesus would not 
have wished him to act as he did, and would fain have kept the 
whole transaction from the knowledge of his Master. 

It is well known that, on the gronnd of the injunction in Ezod. 
XXI. 13 &c., every male in Israel, from twenty years upwards, was 
expected annually to contribute to the Temple-Treasury the sum of 
one half-shekel ' of the Sanctuary,* that is, one common shekel, or two J^^^^y^ 
Attic drachms,* equivalent to about Is. 2d. or Is. Zd. of our money. JiiJ'i'l™^ 
WTiether m: not the original Biblical ordinance was intended to in- -"i'- ^'" 
stitnte a regular annual contribution, the Jews of the Distjersion would 
probably regard it in the light of a patriotic as well as religious act. 
To the particulars previously given on this subject a few others 
may be added. The femily of the Chief of the Sanbedrin (Gamaliel) 
seems to have enjoyed the curious distinction of bringing their con- 
tributions to the Temple-Treasury, not like others, but to have thrown 
them down before him who opened the Temple-Cheat,* when they 
were immediately placed in the box from which, without delay, 
sacrifices were provided.'' Again, the commentators explain a cer- 'siiotm-s 
tain passage in the Mishnah " and the Talmud '' as implying that, ' 
altliough the Jews in Palestine had to pay the tribute-money before 
the Passover, those from neighbouring lands might bring it before 
tbe Feast of Weeks, and those from such remote countries as Baby- 
loniasnd Mediaaslateas the Feast of Tabernacles.* Lastly, although 

' According to Neh. x. 32, immeili- pieces of silver In the Temple (St. Matt. 

•'•'iBfterthe return from Babylon the nvii. 6) f 

"Witrihnlion was a third of a shekel— ' Dcati Pbimptre is mLitaltcn in com- 

I«*«bl7 on account of the poverty ol paring, as regnrdcd the Sadducees, the 

"wpMple. Temple-mt« with the Church-rate qnes- 

' But only one Alejianclrian (comp. tion. There is no aoalogj- between them, 

'*^.Oen. nii:. 16; Josh, vii, 21). not dirt tlio Sndihicees ever qnestion its 

' Coild there have been an intended, propriety. The Dean is also in error in 

*7»hatwoaWbe«illmore8triking— an supposioB, that the Palestinians were 

^tended, bnt very real irony in this, wont to bring it at one of tlie other 

*^ Jodas afterwards cast down the feasts. 

hck. Eil. 4 


BOOK the Mishuah lays it down, that the goods of those might be distrained, 

IV who had not paid the Temple-tribute by the 25th Adar, it is scarcely 

' ' ' credible that this obtained at the time of Christ,' at any rat« in 

• siifioii. vi. Galilee. Indeed, this seems implied in the statement of the Mishnah' 
!> Tome and the Talmud," that one of the ' thirteen trumpets ' in the Temple, 
'* * into which contributions were cast, was destined for the shekels 

of the current, and another for those of the preceding, year. Finally, 
these Temple-contributions were in the first place devoted to the 
purchase of all public sacrifices, that is, those which were offered in 
the name of the whole congregation of Israel, such as the morning 
and evening sacrifices. It will be remembered, that this was one of 
the points in fierce dispute between tlie Pharisees and Sadducee-s, and 
that the former perpetuated their triumph by marking its anniver- 
sary as a festive day in their calendar. It seems a terrible irony of 

• Pi.iL* judgment" when Vespasian ordered, after the destruction of the 

Temple, that this tribute should henceforth be [jaid for the rebuilding 

• Jot. War of the Temple of Jupiter Capitolinus.** 

It will be remembered that, sliortly before the previous Passover, 
Jesus with His disciples had left Capernaum,' that they returned to 
the latter city only for the Sabbath, and that, as we have suggested, 
they passed the first Paschal days on the borders of Tyre. We have^ 
indeed, no means of knowing where the Master bad tarried during 
the ten days between the 15th and the 25th Adar, EupjKising the 
Mishnic arrangements to have been in force in Capernaum. He wa» 
certainly not at Capernaum, and it must also have been known, thdt 
He had not gone up to Jenisalem for the Passover. Accordingly, 
when it was told in Capernaum, that the Kabbi of Nazareth had once 
more come to what seems to have been His Galilean home, it was 
only natural, that they who collected the Temple-tribute ' should 
have applied for its payment. It is quite possible, that their appli- 
cation may have been, if not prompted, yet quickened, by the wish 
t« involve Him in the breach of so well-known an obligation, or else 
by a hostile curiosity. "Would He, W'ho took so strangely different 
views of Jewish observances, and Who made such extraordinary 
claims, own the duty of paying the Temple-tribute ? Had it been 

' Tbo penaltr of distraint had only tbat tbc reference here is not to tha 

been enacted less than a century before TeiDplo- tribute, but t« the Roman poll- 

(aboat 7S), during the reign of Queen titx or ci^nsuH. Irrpspective of tbo qnw- 

BBlome-Alexandni, who was entirely in lion whether a censua was then levied in 

tbo bonds of the Pharisees. Galilee, the tatter is designated bo b in 

> See Book UI. oh. Kxxi. St. Mutt. zvii. SB, and in xiii. l7,aB w^ 

■ If it wore not for tbe authority of bb in St.Uiirk lii. U.aa jcqvrTai, whileheie 

tficivln-, whosupportait. the suggestion the nell-fccowii expreBaioadClriukmaia 

would scarteJy deserve sejions notice, ased. 


owing to His absence, or from principle, that He had not paid it last chap. 
Paasover-seaaoQ ? The question which they put to Peter implies, at m 
least, their donbt. ■ ' 

We have already seen what motives prompted the hasty reply of 
Peter. He might, indeed, also otherwise, in his rashness, have given 
an affirmative answer to the inquiry, without first consulting the 
Master. For there seems little doubt, that Jesus had on former 
occasions complied with the Jewish custom. But matters were now 
wholly changed. Since the first Passover, which had marked His 
first public appearance in the Temple at Jerusalem, He had stated — 
and quite lately in most explicit terms — that He was the Christ, the 
Son of God. To have now paid the Temple-tribute, without explana- 
tion, might have involved a very serious misapprehension. In view 
of all this, the history before ns seems alike simple and natural. 
TbsTe is no {nretext for the artificial construction pat upon it by 
commentators, any more than for the saggestion, that such was the 
poverty of the Master and His disciples, that the small sum requisite 
for the Temple-tribute had to be miraeulouMly supplied. 

We [nctnre it to ourselves on this wise. Those who received the 
Tribate-money had come to Peter, and perhaps met him in the 
conit or corridor, and asked him : ' Your Teacher (Babbi), does He 
not pay the didrachma ? ' While Peter hastily responded in the 
affin&ative, and then entered into the house to procure the coin, or 
else to report what had passed, Jesus, Who had been in another part 
\ of Uie house, hut was cognisant of all, ' anticipated him.' ' Address- 
ing him in kindly language as ' Simon,' He pointed out the real state 
of m&tters by an illustration which must, of course, not be too literally 
prewed, and of which the meaning was : Whom does a King in- 
tend to tax for the maintenance of his palace and officers ? Surely 
■xA hit own &mily, but others. The inference from this, as regarded 
^Temple-tribute, was obvious. As in all similar Jewish parabolic 
teaching, it was only indicated in general principle ; ' Then are the 
chUdreD free.' But even so, be it as Peter had wished, although not 
from the same motive. Let no needless oflFence be given; for, 
*Wiredly, they would not have understood the principle on which 
'^hriit would have refused the Tribute-money,' and all misunder- 

' Hw Bcriaed Tersion, as it eeenu to of that word. 

Hnridf renden ■ spake fiist.' Bntthe ■ In Suoc. 30 a, we read sparable of a 

^ (■ H »l <i '») doea not bear that mean- king who paid toll, and being asked tlie 

"ttauj of Uie fifteen passages in the reason, replied tbat travellers were to 

^U, irtwrt it comsponds to tbe learn by his example not to seek to 

B*htw fi44m, mm! means ' to antici. withdraw tbemaelves from paTiog the 

l*'*'<t*to preTent* in the archaic sense dnu. 
T«. II. I 


standing on the part of Peter was now imposBible. Yet Christ wonlrf 
still further vindicate His royal title. He will pay for Peter, alsi^ 
and pay as heaven's King with a Stater, or four-drachm piece, 
imrsculously provided. 

Thns viewed, there ia, we submit, a moral purpose and spiritual 
inetmction in the provision of the Stater out of the fish's month. 
The rationalistic explanation of it need not be seriously considered; 
for any mythical interpretation there is not the shadow of support 
in Biblical precedent or Jewish expectancy. Bat the narrative in 
its literality has a true and high meaning. And if we wished b> 
mark the difference between its sober simplicity and the extravagsncea 
of legend, we would remind ourselves, not only of the well-known 
story of the Ring of Polycrates, but of two somewhat kindred Jewish 
Haggadahs. They are both intended to glorify the Jewish mode of Sab- 
bath observance. One of them bears that one Joseph, known aa*the 
honom%r ' of the Sabbath, had a wealthy heathen neighbour, to whom 
the Chaldieans had prophesied that all .his riches would come to 
Joseph. To render this impossible, the wealthy man converted aH 
his property into one magnificent gem, which he carefully concealed 
within his head-gear. Then he took ship, so as for ever to avoid the 
dangerous vicinity of the Jew. But the wind blew his head-geu 
into the sea, and the gem was swallowed by a fish. And, lo ! it was 
the holy season, and they brought to the market a splendid fish. 
Who would purchase it but Joseph, for none as he would prepare to 
honour the day by the best which he could provide. But when tixey 
opened the fish, the gem was found in it — the moral being : * IC^ 
that borroweth for the Sabbath, the Sabbath will repay him.' ■ 
I The other legend is similar. It was in Rome (in the Ghriati»J 

world) that a poor tailor went to market to buy a fish for a festi*^' 
meal.' Only one was on sale, and for it there was keen competitic^'' 
between the servant of the Prince and the Jew, the latter at 1«-^ 
buying it for not less than twelve dinars. At the banquet, tl^^' 
Prince inquired of his servants why no fish had been provid^^ 
When he ascertained the cause, he sent for the Jew with the tiire^* 
ening inquiry, how a poor tailor could afford to pay twelve dinars 0^ 
a fish ? * My Lord,' replied the Jew, ' there is a day on which ^^ 
onr sins are remitted us, and should we not honour it?' The ansi^*' 
satisfied the Prince. But God rewarded the Jew, for, when the ^^ 

' In the Midraah : ' On the ere of the tended to apply to the distinctiaa to **" 
great fast ' (the Da; of Atonement). But put on Uui Sabbath-meal. 
£r(Mii the connection it ia evideotlj in- 


vaa opened, a precious gem was found in it, which he sold, aad ever chap. 
afterwards lived of the proceeds.* ui 

The reader caji scarcely fail to mark the. absolute difference be- ."b^V n" 
tween even the most beautiful Jewish legends and any trait in the """«''-''-* 
Evangelic history. 

3. The event next recorded in the Gospels took place partly on 
the way from the Mount of Transfiguration to Capernaum, and partly 
in O^temaom itself, immediately after the scene connected with the 
Tribute-money. It is recorded by the three Evangelists, and it led 
to explanations and admonitions, which are told by St. Mark and St. 
Luke, bnt chiefly by St. Matthew. This circumstance seems to in- 
dicate, that the latter was a chief actor in that which occasioned this 
special teaching and warning of Christ, and that it must have sunk 
vety deeply into his heart. 

As we look at it, in the light of the then mental and spiritual 
state of the Apostles, not in that in which, perhaps oiiturallj, we 
regard them, what happen«d seems not difficult to understand. As 
St. Mark puts it,* by the way they had disputed among themselves 'st-irark 
which of them would be the greatest — aa St. Matthew explains," in ,^ ),a„ 
the Messianic Kingdom of Heaven. They might now the more con- "*"■ ' 
fidently expect its near Advent from the mysterious announcement 
of the Resurrection on the third day,'* which they would probably " st. Mmt, 
connect with the commencement of the last Judgment, following st.MHrkii 
upon the violent Death of the Messiah. Of a dispute, serious and 
«*eit violent, among the disciples, we have evidence in the exhorta- 
tion of the Master, as reported by St. Mark," in the direction of the ■f^*'"^ 
I^ how to deal with an offending brother, and in the answering 
iiiqniiy of Peter/ Nor can we be at a loss to perceive its occasion, 'st. Mmt. 
The distinction just bestowed on the three, in being taken up the 
Mcnmt, may have roused feelings of jealousy in the others, perhaps 
of aeltexaltation in the three. Alike the spirit which John displayed 
u> hii harsh prohibition of the man that did not follow with the dis- 
•^plegj^and the self-righteous bargaining of Peter about forgiving •stjiirit 
we mpposed or real offences of a brother,*" give evidence of anything ^ g^ ^i^^^^ 
out the fiume of mind which we would have expected after the *""■ " 
* inon on the Mount. 

In truth, most incongruous as it may appear to us, looking back 
"I it in the light of the Resurrection-day, nay, almost incredible — 
•'wently, the Apostles were still greatly under the influence of the 
«W iiuit. It was the common Jewish view, that there would be 
"^■■tinctions of rank in the Kingdom of Heaven. It can scarcely be 


neeesBary to prove this by Rabbinic quotations, since the whole 
Hystem of Rubbinism and Pbarisaisni, with its separation fi:x>m the 
vulgar and ignonint, rests upon It. But even within the charmed 
circle of Rabbinism, there would be distinctions, due to learning, 
merit, and even to favouritism. In this world there were His special 
favourites, who could command anything at His hand, to use the 
B Rabbinic expression : ' like a spoilt child from its father.' " ' And in 
the Messianic age God would assign booths to each according to bis 
rank.'' On the other hand, many passages could be quoted bearing 
on the duty of humiUty and self-abasement. But the stress laid on 
the merit attaching to this showR too clearly, that it was the pride that 
apes humility. One instance," previously referred to, will suiEce hy 
way of illustration. When the child of the great Rabbi Jochanan 
ben Saccai was dangerously ill, he was restored through the prayer 
of one Chanina ben Dosa. On this the father of the child remarked 
to his wife : ' If the son of Saccai had all day long put his head be- 
tween his knees, no heed would have been given to him.' ' How is 
that ? ' asked hia wife ; * is Chanina greater than thou ? ' * No,' ms 
the reply, ' he is like a servant before the King, while I am like 
a prince before the King' (he is always there, and has thus opportn- 
uities which I, as a lord, do not enjoy). 

How deep-rooted were such thoughts and feelings, appears not 
only from the dispute of the disciples by the way, but from the 
request proffered by the mother of Zebedee's children and her son* 
at a later period, in terrible contrast to the near Passion of oor 
Lord,'' It does, indeed, come upon ub as a most painful surprise, 
and as sadly incongruous, this constant self-obtrusion, self-asser- 
tion, and low, carnal self-seeking; this Judaistic trifling in fece 
of the utter self-abnegation and self-sacrifice of the Son of Man- 
Surely, the contrast between Christ and His disciples seems at time^ 
iilmost aa great as between Him and the other Jews. If we woiilt^ 
measure His Stature, or comprehend the infinite distance betwee«» 
His aims and teaching and those of His contemporaries, let it he b^^ 
t'omi>arison with even the best of His disciples. It must have bee«* 
[wrt of His humiliation and self-esinanition to bear with thettB-- 
And is it not, in a sense, still so as regards us ail ? 

We have already seen, that there wa.s quite sufficient occasiof* 
and material for such a dispute on the way from the Mount of 
Transfiguration to Capernaum. We suppose Peter to have only at 

I The almoat blusphemous story of 
iw Chdoi or Onina, 'the circle-drawer," 
I'W u uirule nrouni'l liiin, and refoaed to 
x\i< It till Qod hod sent raiu— and sue 

iivoly objetted t 
ch, stuuda by no 
die legeii<i. 

If BIlll to" 

lone ut Xl^ J 


the first been with the others. To judge by the later question, how cb 
ofteo be was to forgive the brother who had eioned against him, he i 
may have been bo deeply hurt, that he left the other disciples, and 
hastened on with the Master, Who would, at any rate, eojoum in 
his honse. For, neither he nor Christ seem to have been present 
when John and the others forbade the man, who would not follow 
with them, to cast out demons in Christ's name. Again, the other 
disciples only came into Capemaom, and entered the house, just as 
Pet«T had gone for the Stater, with which to pay the Temple-tribute 
fat the Master and himself. And, if speculation be permissible, we 
wonld suggest that the brother, whose offences Peter found it bo 
difficult to forgive, may have been none other than Judas. In such 
ft dispate by the way, he, with his Judaistic views, would be specially 
i&terested ; perhaps he may have been its chief instigator ; certainly, 
he, whose natural character, amidst its sharp contrasts to that of 
Peter, {nreaented so many points of resemblance to it, would, on many 
grounds, be specially jealous of, and antagonistic to him. 

Quite natural in view of this dispute by the way is another inci- 
dent <rf the journey, which is afterwards related.' As we judge, John ■ e^ 
■eons to have been the principal actor in it ; perhaps, in the absence ^^ li 
d Peter, he claimed the leadership. They had met one who, in the 
Naoe of Christ, was casting out demons — whether successfully or 
not, we need scarcely inquire. So widely had faith in the power of 
Jens extended ; so real was the belief in the subjection of the 
deoons to Him ; so reverent was the acknowledgment of Him. A 
Bum, who, thus forsaking the methods of Jewish exorcists, owned 
JttQs in the face of the Jewish world, could not be far from the 
Kingdom of Heaven ; at any rate, he could not quickly speak evil of 
Bini. John bad, in name of the disciples, forbidden him, because 
lie hid not cast in his lot wholly with them. It was quite in the 
fitit of their ideas about the Messianic Kingdom, and of their 
"JfJHite, which of His close followers would be greatest there. And 
Jet, they might deceive themselves as to the motives of their 
•wdnet. If it were not almost impertinence to use such terms, we 
*oiild have said that there was infinite wisdom and kindness in the 
•"nrer which the Saviour gave, when referred to on the subject. To 
irtid a man, in such circumstances, would be either prompted by the 
^t of the dispute by the way — or else must be grounded on 
widence that the motive was, or the effect would ultimately be (as 
n the case of the sons of Sceva) to lead men * to speak evil ' of 
^^litt, or to hinder the work of His disciples. Assuredly, such 
could not have been the case with a man, who iuvoked His Name, 


BOOK and perhaps experienced its efficacy. More than thiB — and here 
^ an eternal principle: 'He that is not against us is for ns ;' he tbrsj 
opposeth not the disciples, really is for them — a saying still mojt 

■BtLnke clear, when we adopt the better reading in St. Lnke,' * He thati a 
not against you is for you.' ' 

There was reproof in this, as well as instruction, deeply consistenE 

^^i*M, .^(^ tjjj,t other, though 8eeniinglydiflFerent,saying:'' 'He thatisnot 
with Me is against Me.' The distinction between them is twt^ilit 
In the one case it is ' not against,' in the other it is ' not with ; ' bat 
chieSy it lies in this : in the one case it is not against t^e disdplei 
in their work, while in the other it is — not with Christ. A man i^ 
did what he could with such knowledge of Christ as he posseiaed, 
even although he did not absolutely follow with them, was 'not 
against' them. Such an one should be regarded as thus &r witli 
them ; at least be let alone, left to Him Who knew all things. Soeli 
a man would not lightly speak evil of Christ — and that was alltia 
disciples should care for, unless, indeed, they sought their ovd. 
Quite other was it as regarded the relation of a person to the Chnrt 
Himself. There neutrality waa impossible — and that which was not 
with Christ, by this veiy fact was against Him. The lesson is of the 
most deep-reaching character, and the distinction, alas ! still oM- 
looked — perhaps, betause ours is too often the spirit of those who 
journeyed to Capernaum. Not, that it is unimportant to follow iritk 
the disciples, but that it is not ours to forbid any work done, hamvfX 
imperfectly, in His Name, and that only one question is really vital 
— whether or not a man is decidedly with Christ. 

Such were the incidents by the way. And now, while withholding 
from Christ their dispute, and, indeed, anything that might seer*^ 
personal in the question, the disciples, on entering the house wheiT* 
He was in Capernaum, addressed to Him this inquiry (which shooL^ 
be inserted ^m the opening words of St. Matthew's narrative^ 
* 'VlTio, then, is greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven ? ' It was * 

Bt.LDke general question — but Jesus perceived the thought of their hearty 

et unrk He knew about what they had disputed by the way,"* and now aske^ 
them about it. The account of St. Mark is most graphic. We almo^ 
see the scene. Conscience-stricken * they hold their peace.' As w^ 

In Bt MHt read the further words : • * And He sat down,' it seems ae if th^- 

■ Readera of ordinary Eobiiety ot digciples eui aUoaion to ' Pauline Chri^ 

judgment vrOl form their opimona of the tUnitj,' of which St. Hark took a moc^ 

Talae of modeni negative criticism, when charitable view than Bt. Matthew I 9f 

we tell them that It has diaooTered in such treatment foa may mako ■lijillilll^ 

thu tnao who did not follow with the of the facts of histcoy. 


3Iaster had at first gone to welcome the disciples on their arrival, chap. 
and they, ' full of their dispute,' had, without delay, addressed their in 
inquiry to Him in the court or antechamber, where they met ' 

Him, when, reading their thoughts. He had first put the searching 
counter-question, what had been the subject of their dispute. Then, 
leading the way into the house, * He sat down,' not only to answer 
their inquiry, which was not a real inquiry, but to teach them what 
so much they needed to learn. He called a little child — perhaps 
Peter's little son — and put him in the midst of them. Not to strive 
who was to be greatest, but to be utterly without self-consciousness, 
like a child — thus, to become turned and entirely changed in mind : 
* converted,' was the condition for entering into the Kingdom of 
Heaven* Then, as to the question of greatness there, it was really 
one of greatness of service — and that was greatest service which 
implied most self-denial. Suiting the action to the teaching, the 
Blessed Saviour took the happy child in His Arms. Not, to teach, 
to preach, to work miracles, nor to do great things, but to do the 
humblest service for Christ's sake — lovingly, earnestly, wholly, self- 
foi]getfiilly, simply for Christ, was to receive Christ — nay, to receive 
the Father. And the smallest service, as it might seem — even the 
giving a cup of cold water in such spirit, would not lose its reward. 
Blessed teaching this to the disciples and to us ; blessed lesson, 
which, these many centuries of scorching heat, has been of unspeak- 
able refireshing, alike to the giver and the receiver of the cup of 
water in the Name of Christ, in the love of Christ, and for the sake 
of Christ.* 

These words about receiving Christ, and * receiving in the Name 
of Christ,' had stirred the memory and conscience of John, and made 
Mm half wonder, half fear, whether what they had done by the way, 
in forbidding the man to do what he could in the Name of Christ, 
had been right. And so he told it, and received the further and 
Irigher teaching on the subject. And, more than this, St. Mark and, 
D'W)re folly, St. Matthew, record some further instruction in con- 
i^ection with it, to which St. Luke refers, in a slightly diflferent fonn, 
^ a somewhat later period.* But it seems so congruous to the •stLuke 
Present occasion, that we conclude it was then spoken, although, ^"^ 
^^ other sayings,^ it may have been afterwards repeated under bOomp.«or 
^'^^rilar circumstances.' Certainly, no more eflFective continuation, 1^52* ix. 

CO with 

^erW paiallels could easily be lies in its being so utterly un- Jewish. ff ^^^ ^* 

2^?^^ and naturally so, since Jesus * Or else St. Luke may have gathered 

^^ aa a Jew to Jews — but no real into connected discourses what may have 

'^^UeL Indeed, the point of the story been spoken at different times. 




• Chethub. 
69 b, line 18 

10 b, flnt 

•Kidd. 29 6, 
lines 10 and 

• from 


and application to Jewish minds, of the teaching of our Lord could-B 
be conceived than that which follows. For, the love of Christ goe^ 
deeper than the condescension of receiving a child, utterly un-Phari — 
saic and un-Eabbinic as this is. To have regard to the weaknesses oC 
such a child — to its mental and moral ignorance and folly, to adaptu:^ 
ourselves to it, to restrain our fuller knowledge and forego our felt=- 
liberty, so as not * to oflFend ' — not to give occasion for stumbling 
* one of these little ones,' that so through our knowledge the 
brother for whom Christ died should not perish: this is a lessoi^. 
which reaches even deeper than the question, what is the conditiocm 
of entrance into the Kingdom, or what service constitutes reLM. 
greatness in it. A man may enter into the Kingdom and do service 
— yet, if in so doing he disregard the law of love to the little 
far better his work should be abruptly cut short; better, one 
those large millstones, turned by an ass, were hung about his 
and he cast into the sea ! We pause to note, once more, the Judaio, 
and, therefore, evidential, setting of the Evangelic narrative. Th.e 
Talmud also speaks of two kinds of millstones — ^the one turned by 
Iwind (kth D^'Pn)>* referred to in St. Luke xvii. 35 ; the other turned 
by an ass (^fivkos oviKosi), just as the Talmud speaks of ^ the ass of 
the millstone ' (K^rrm 'lon)-^ Similarly, the figure about a mill- 
stone hung round the neck occurs also in the Talmud — althougb 
there as figurative of almost insuperable difficulties.^ Again, the 
expression, * it were better for him,' is a well-known Babbinic expres- 
sion {Mviav hajah 16).^ Lastly, according to St. Jerome, the punish- 
ment which seems alluded to in the words of Christ, and which ire 
know to have been inflicted by Augustus, was actually practised by 
the Bomans in Galilee on some of the leaders of the insurrection 
under Judas of Gralilee. 

And yet greater guilt would only too surely be incurred ! Woe 
unto the world! Occasions of stumbling and oflFence will surely 
come, but woe to the man through whom such havoc was wrought. 
What then is the alternative? If it be a question as between 
offence and some part of ourselves, a limb or member, however use- 
ful — the hand, the foot, the eye — then let it rather be severed from 
the body, however painful, or however seemingly great the loss. It 
cannot be so great as that of the whole being in the eternal fire of Oe- 
henna, where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.^ Be 

> St. Mark iz. 44, the last clause of ver. 
45, and ver. 46, seem to be spurious. But 
ver. 48, as well as the expression * fire that 

never shall be quenched,* and in St. Hat* 
thew, * everlasting fire,' are on aU bands 
admitted to be genuine. The qaestioii of 


i liand, foot, or eye — practice, porBuit, or research — which conscioueily chap. 
&aAs as to occasions of stambling, it must be resolutely put aside in ill 
rlew of the incomparably greater loss of eternal remorse and anguish. "^ "" 

Here St. Mark abroptly breaks oflf with a sentence in which the 
Saviour makes general application. But the narrative is further 
continued by St. Matthew. The words are so remarkable, so brief, 
we had almost said truncated, as to require special consideration. It 
seona to us that, turning fi'om this thought, that even members 
which are intended for useful service may, in certain circumstances, 
have to be cut off to avoid the greatest loss, the Lord gave to His 
diupleg this as the final summary and explanation of all : ' For 
«eiy one shall be salted for the fire ' ' — or, as a very early gloss, 
wliieh has strangely crept into the text,' paraphrased and explained 
it) 'Every sacrifice shall be salted with salt.' No one is fit for the 
■Krificial fire, no one can be, or offer anything as a sacrifice, unless 
it kve been first, according to the Levitical Law, covered with salt, 
^bolic of the incorruptible. * Salt is good ; but if the salt,' 
with ihich the spiritual sacrifice is to be salted for the fire, ' have 
W its savour, wherewith will ye season it ? ' Hence, ' have salt in 
yoiusdves,' but do not let that salt be corrupted by making it an 
'''■^asioD of offence to others, or among yourselves, as in the dispute 
'Vthe way, or in the disposition of mind that led to it, or in forbid- 
•^ others to work who follow not with you, but *be at peace 
uuoiig yourselves.' 

To this explanation of the words of Christ it may, perhaps, be 
»dded that, from their form, they must have conveyed a special mean- 
^ to the disciples. It was a well-known law, that every sacrifice 
'™niedon the Altar must be salted wi^ salt.* Indeed, according to • 
"le Talmud, not only every such offering, but even the wood with 
^hidi the sacrificial fire was kindled, was sprinkled with salt.'' Salt " MmKb. 
■obelised to the Jews of that time the incorruptible and the higher. 
Thnj^ the soul was compared to the salt, and it was said concerning 
tie dead: 'Shake off the salt, and throw the flesh to the dog8."= ■Kidd.iia 
"« Bible was compared to salt; so was acuteness of intellect.* "XMiM* 
^*8tly, the question : ' If the salt have lost its savour, wherewith 
^ ye season it ? ' seems to have been proverbial, and occurs in 

'Saul paniahment,' from tha stand- ' We can readily understand bow that 

ftnt ti Jewish theologj, will be treated clauae, which was one of the most ancient 

"tlttat pait. explanations, perhapa a maiginal gloeson 

.' He Teoderin^ 'Salted for the fire,' the tcit ' Everj'one shall be salted for the 

'*>•» ft sacrifice, baa been adopted by fire," crept into the it'irt when its meaning 

"" '" -- was no longer nnderatood. 




' Chag. 12 
R. Eliee. 4 

exactly the same words in the Talmud, apparently to denote a thing 
that is impossible.* * 
• Bcchor. Most thoroughly anti-Pharisaic and anti-Babbinic as all this was, 

and 18 from what St. Matthew further reports leads still farther in the same 
direction. We seem to see Jesus still holding this child, and, witk 
evident reference to the Jewish contempt for that which is small, 
point to him and apply, in quite other manner than they had ever 
heard, the Rabbinic teaching about the Angels. Li the Jewish view,* 
only the chiefest of the Angels were before the Face of God witliiB 
the curtained Veil, or Pargod, while the others, ranged in different 
classes, stood outside and awaited His behest.^ The distinction whidi 
the former enjoyed was always to behold His Face, and to hear and 
know directly the Divine counsels and commands. This distinction 
was, therefore, one of knowledge ; Christ taught that it was one of Iotc. 
Not the more exalted in knowledge, and merit, or worth, but the 
simpler, the more imconscious of self, the more receptive and ding- 
ing — the nearer to God. Look up from earth to heaven ; those re- 
presentative, it may be, guardian. Angels nearest to God, are not 
those of deepest knowledge of God's counsel and commands, bnt 
those of simple, humble grace and faith — and so learn, not only not 
to despise one of these little ones, but who is truly greatest in the 
Kingdom of Heaven ! 

Viewed in this light, there is nothing incongruous in the trans' 
ition : * For the Son of Man is come to save that which was lost. 
This, His greatest condescension when He became the Babe of Beth- 
lehem, is also His greatest exaltation. He Who is nearest th^ 
Father, and, in the most special and unique sense, always behdd^ 
His Face, is He that became a Child, and, as the Son of MaX*^ 
stoops lowest, to save that which was lost. The words are, indee^^ 
regarded as spurious by most critics, because certain leading mantJ^ 
scripts omit them, and they are supposed to have been import^ 
from St. Luke xix. 10. But such a transference from a conte^ 
wholly unconnected with this section * seems unaccountable, whil^ 
on the other hand, the verse in question forms, not only an apt, b'*^ 
almost necessary, traDsition to the Parable of the Lost Sheep. ^ 
seems, therefore, difficult to eliminate it without also striking o^ 

' n^ ^rhD »KD3 'no ^3 Kr6*D— 'the 

salt, when it becomes ill-savonring, with 
what shaU it be seasoned ? ' The passage 
occurs in a very curioas Haggadah, and 
the objection that salt woi^d not become 
Ul-savouring, would not apply to the 
proverb in the form g^ven it by Christ. 

* Seethe Appendix on* Angelologj I 

' Except that the history of 
in which the words occur, is really an ^^ 
plication to real life of the Pazable of i>^ 
Lost Sheep. 


that Parable ; and yet it fits most beautifully into the whole context, chap. 
Suffice it for the present to note this. The Parable itself is more m 
ftilly repeated in another connection,* in which it will be more •st.Luke"' 
convenient to consider it. ^^* ^^ 

Yet a further depth of Christian love remained to be shown, 
which, all self-forgetful, sought not its own but the things of others. 
This also bore on the circumstances of the time, and the dispute 
between the disciples, but went far beyond it, and set forth eternal 
principles. Hitherto it had been a question of not seeking self, nor 
minding great things, but, Christ-like and God-like, to condescend 
to the Httle ones. What if actual wrong had been done, and just 
offence given, by a * brother ' ? In such case, also, the principle of 
the Kingdom — ^which, negatively, is that of self-forgetfulness, posi- 
tively, that of service of love — would first seek the good of the 
offending brother. We mark, here, the contrast to Rabbinism, which 
directs that the first overtures must be made by the offender, not 
the offended ; ^ and even prescribes this to be done in presence of »» Yoma yiii. 
nmnerous witnesses, and, if needful, repeated three times.® As re- c Yom» 
gards the duty of showing to a brother his fault, and the delicate **^ " 
tenderness of doing this in private, so as not to put him to shame, 
Rabbinism speaks the same as the Master of Nazareth.* In feet, \^^^^' 
according to Jewish criminal law, punishment could not be inflicted J^^?|*l 
unless the offender (even the woman suspected of adultery) had pre- 
viously been warned before witnesses. Yet, in practice, matters were 
very different; and neither could those be foimd who would take re- 
proof^ nor yet such as were worthy to administer it.® * Arach.u.8. 

Quite other was it in the Kingdom of Christ, where the theory 
was left undefined, but the practice clearly marked. Here, by loving 
dealing to convince of his wrong him who had done it, was not 
hxumliation nor loss of dignity or of right, but real gain : the gain 
of otir brother to us, and eventually to Christ Himself. But even if 
ttiifl should fail, the offended must not desist from his service of love, 
^t conjoin in it others with himself to give weight and authority to 
^8 remonstrances, as not being the outcome of personal feeling or pre- 
judice — ^perhaps, also, to be witnesses before the Divine tribunal. If 
^ iiuled, a final appeal should be made on the part of the Church as 
* whole, which, of course, could only be done through her repre- 
^tatives and rulers, to whom Divine authority had been committed, 
^dif that were rejected, the offer of love would, as always in the 
^^1, pass into danger of judgment. Not, indeed, that such was 
^ be executed by man, but that such an offender, after the first and 


BOOK second axlmonition, was to be rejected.* He was to be treated as 
IV the custom in regard to a heathen or a publican — not persecui 

^ Titus ui.~iu despised, or avoided, but not received in Church-fellowship 
heathen), nor admitted to close familiar intercourse (a public 
And this, as we understand it, marks out the mode of what is ca 
Church discipline in general, and specifically as regards wrong d 
to a brother. Discipline so exercised (which may Grod restore to 
has the highest Divine sanction, and the most earnest reality attac 
to it. For, in virtue of the authority which Christ had committet 
the Church in the persons of her rulers and representatives,* what t 
bound or loosed — declared obligatory or non-obligatory — ^was rati 
in heaven. Nor was this to be wondered at. The Incarnation 
Christ was the link which bound earth to heaven ; through it wl 
ever was agreed upon in the fellowship of Christ, as that which wa 

«» Bt Matt, be asked, would be done for them of His Father Which was in heav( 
Thus, the power of the Church reached up to heaven through 
power of prayer in His Name Who made God our Father, j 
so, beyond the exercise of discipline and authority, there was 
omnipotence of prayer — ' if two of you shall agree ... as toucl 
anything ... it shall be done for them ' — and, with it, the infi: 
possibility of a higher service of love. For, in the smallest gathei 
in the Name of Christ, His Presence would be,^ and with it 

• St. Matt, certainty of nearness to, and acceptance with, God.® 

It is bitterly disappointing that, after such teaching, even a P 
could — either immediately afterwards, or perhaps after he had 
time to think it over, and apply it — come to the Master with 
question, how often he was to forgive an ofifending brother, imagii 
that he had more than satisfied the new requirements, if he extei 
it to seven times. Such traits show better than elaborate discuss 
the need of the mission and the renewing of the Holy Ghost, 
yet there is something touching in the simplicity and honesty ' 
which Peter goes to the Master, with such a misapprehension of 

> It is both curious and interesting to have been the delegates of the Cli 

find that the question, whether the but must be those of God. (Sec 

Priests exercised their functions as ' the essay by DelUzsch in the Zeitschi 

sent of God ' or ' the sent of the oongre- Luther. Theol. for 1854, pp. 446-44{ 
gation' — that is, held their commission > The Mishnah (Ab. iii. 2), an< 

directly from God, or only as being the Talmud (Ber. 6 a), infer from Ms 

representatives of the people, is discussed 16, that, when two are togethei 

already in the Talmud (Yoma 18 & &c. ; occupy themselves with the Law 

Nedar. 86 d). The Talmud replies that, Shechinah is between them. Simi 

as it is impossible to delegate what one it is argued from Lament, iii. 28, 

does not possess, and since the laity might Exod. xx. 21, that if even one alone 

neither offer sacrifices nor do any Uke gaged in such pursuits, God ia wit] 

service, the Priests could not possibly and will bless him. 



teaching, as if he had fiillj entered into its spirit. Snrelj, the new ci 
vine vas Inirsting the old hottles. It was a principle of Rabbinism 
that, even if the wrongdoer had made full restoration, he would not 
obtain forgiveness till he had asked it of him whom he had wronged, 
bat that it was cruelty in such circnmstances to refuse pardon,* The •But 
Jemaalem Talmad '' adds the beautiful remark ; ' Let this be a token b j„ 
in thine hand — each time that thou showeat mercy, God will show ^'' 
mepcy on thee ; and if thou showest not mercy, neither will God 
show mercy on thee.' And yet it was a settled rule, that forgiveness 
■hould not be extended more than three times." Even bo, the =toi 
P^ctioe was terribly different. The Talmud relates, without blame, 
""e conduct of a Rabbi, who would not forgive a veiy amall slight of 
"is dignity, though asked by the offender for thirteen successive 
jeara, and that on the Day of Atonement — the reason being, that the 
''"ended Rabbi had learned by a dream that his offending brother 
^Xild attain the highest dignity, whereupon he feigned himself 
"^'^^xmcilable, to force the other to migrate from Palestine to Babylon, 
*t».^re, xmenvied by him, he might occupy the chief place ! * ' ''" 

And 80 it must have seemed to Peter, in his ignorance, quite a 
^•~etch of charity to extend forgiveness to seven, instead of three 
''S^nces. It did not occur to him, that the very act of munbering 
™^aoeB marked an extemalism which had never entered into, nor 
«>*ttpreheDded, the spirit of Christ. Until seven times ? Nay, until 
"■'"enty times seven ! ' The evident purport of these words was to efface 
•11 such landmarks. Peter had yet to learn, what we, alas ! too often 
lov^et : that as Christ's forgiveness, so that of the Christian, must not 
be ccsDpnted by numbers. It is qualitative, not qua/ntitative : Christ 
Wgives sin, not sina — and he who has experienced it, follows in His 

' It nuJcet no differenoe id the &r- ' The Parable, with which the account 

gameiit, whether we traoelate serent; in St. Matthewclosce.willbeeipUmedbj 
times nren, or eke seventj times and and by in the Second Seriea of Parables. 




(St. John vii. 1-16; St. Lnkeii. 1-66; 67-62; St. Matthew viiL 19-2S.) 

The part in the Evangelic History which we have now reached ba^ 
this peculiarity and difficulty, that the events are recorded by od^ 
one of the Evangelists. The section in St. Lake's Gospel froto- 
chap. is. 51 to chap, xviii. 14 stands absolutely alone. Fnno- 
the circumstance that St. Luke omits throughout his narrative all 
notation of time or place, the difSculty of arranging here the chnm*-" 
logical aueceasion of events is so great, that we can only suggest wli»^ 
seems moat probable, without feeling certain of the details. Happil^v 
the period embraced ie a short one, while at the same time th^s 
narrative of St, Luke remarkably fits into that of St. John. St. J(JiK» 
mentions three appearances of Christ in Jerusalem at that period: a.*' 
the Feast of Tabernacles,' at that of the Dedication,'" and Hia fiiwJ 
entry, which is referred to by all the other Evangelists." And, whil^ 
the narrative of St. John confines itself exclusively to what happenftcJ 
in Jerusalem or its immediate neighbourhood, it also either mentuas-^ 
or gives sufficient indication that on two out of these three occaaioa^ 
Jesus left Jerusalem for the country east of the Jordan (St. John ^- 
19-21 ; St. John i. 39 to 43, where the words in verse 39, *the^ 
sought again to take Him,' point to a previous similar attempt an-*' 
flight). Besides these, St. John also records a journey to Bethany- — ' 
. though not to Jerusalem — for the raising of Lazarus,'' and after that * 
council against Christ in Jerusalem, in consequence of which He witf*" 
drew out of Judsean territory into a district near ' the wildemees ' ■ — " 
as we infer, that in the north, where John had been baptizing ai»" 
Christ been tempted, and whither He had afterwards withdrawn.' "9^^ 
regard this ' wilderness ' as on the western bank of the Jordan, ai:*-" 
extending northward towards the western shore of the lake of Galila^ -' 
If St. John relates three appearances of Jesus at fhia time M^ 


Jerusalem, St. Luke records three journeys to Jerusalem,^ the hist cHAr. 
of which agrees, in regard to its starting-point, with the notices of iv 
the other Evangelists,** always supposing that we have correctly in- • st. Luke 
dicated the locality of ' the wilderness ' whither, according to St. 22'; xvifi. 31 
John xi. 54, Christ retired previous to His last journey to Jerusalem. ^^**i^*"* 
In this respect, although it is impossible with our present infor- stMarkx,! 
Daation to localise * the City of Ephraim,' the statement that it was 

* near the wilderness,' aflFords us sufficient general notice of its situa- 
tion. For, the New Testament speaks of only two * wildernesses,' 
^at of Judaea in the fer South, and that in the far North of Persea, 
^^ perhaps in the Decapolis, to which St. Luke refers as the scene of 
^^^ Saptist's labours, where Jesus was tempted, and whither He after- 
^^'^cis withdrew. We can, therefore, have little doubt that St. John 
^fers^^to this district. And this entirely accords with the notices «inst,johii 

k xi. 64 

°y the other Evangelists of Christ's last journey to Jerusalem, as 
wongh the borders of Galilee and Samaria, and then across the 
J^^x-fJan, and by Bethany to Jerusalem. 

It follows (as previously stated) that St. Luke's account of the 
^«^in^e journeys to Jerusalem fits into the narrative of Christ's three 
^X^eaianoes in Jerusalem as described by St. John. And the unique 
^^<^ion Vfi St. Luke * supplies the record of what took place before^ •« st. Luke 
dt^'w^ngy and after those journeys, of which the upshot is told by St. li 
^^^n* Thus much seems certain ; the exact chronological succes- 
o^xx must be, in part, matter of suggestion. But we have now some 
i^^ght into the plan of St. Luke's Gospel, as compared with that 
of t,he others. We see that St. Luke forms a kind of transition, 
^ a sort of connecting link between the other^two Synoptists® J^*;^^J^ 
*^d St. John. This is admitted even by negative critics.^ The st.-\tark 
froopel by St. Matthew has for its main object the Discourses or iS^e™""' 
^^^ching of the Lord, around which the History groups itself. It is ^^^^ ^' 
"^tended as a demonstration, primarily addressed to the Jews, and in 

* form peculiarly suited to them, that Jesus was the Messiah, the 
^H of the Living God. The Gospel by St. Mark is a rapid survey 
0* the History of the Christ as such. It deals mainly with the 
"^ilean Ministry, The Gospel by St. John, which gives the 
^ghest, the reflective, view of the Eternal Son as the Word, deals 
^^*^^no8t exdusvveiy with the Jerusalem Ministry.^ And the Gospel 
^y St. Luke complements the narratives in the other two Gospels (St. 
■*'^tthew and St. Mark), and it supplements them by tracmg, what 

Thiff seems onaocoimtable on the modem negative theory of its being an Ephesian 



• St. Lnko 
Ix. r,l 

b St. John 


is not done otherwise : the Ministry in Percea. Thus, it also fonns 
a transition to the Fourth Gospel of the Judsean Ministry. If yre 
may venture a step further : The Gospel by St. Mark gives the general 
view of the Christ ; that by St. Matthew the Jewish, that by St 
Luke the Gentile, and that by St. John the Church's view. Imagi- 
nation might, indeed, go still further, and see the impress of the 
number Jive — that of the Pentateuch and the Book of Psalm»-4ii 
the First Gospel ; the numeral four (that of the world) in the 
Second Gospel (4 x 4 = 16 chapters); that of three in the Third 
(8 X 3 = 24 chapters); and that of seven, the sacred Church number, 
in the Fourth Gospel (7 x 3 = 21 chapters). And perhaps we mig^t 
even succeed in arranging the Gospels into corresponding sectionB.' 
But this would lead, not only beyond our present task, but firom solid 
history and exegesis into the regions of speculation. 

The subject, then, primarily before us, is the journeying of Jem 
to Jerusalem. In that wider view which St. Luke takes of this 
whole history, he presents what really were three separate joumej» 
as one — that towards the great end. In its conscious aim and object, 
all — from the moment of His finally quitting Galilee to His fiittl 
Entry into Jerusalem — formed, in the highest sense, only one journey* 
And this St. Luke designates in a peculiar manner. Just as ' he 
had spoken, not of Christ's Death but of His * Exodus,' or outg(»ng9 
which included His Eesurrection and Ascension, so he now tells u* 
that, * when the days of His uptaking ' — ^including and pointing to 
His Ascension ^ — ' were being fulfilled, He also * steadfastly set * Hi^ 
Face to go to Jerusalem.' 

St. John, indeed, goes farther back, and speaks of the circniO^ 
stances which preceded His journey to Jerusalem. There is 
interval, or, as we might term it, a blank, of more than half a y 
between the last narrative in the Fourth Gospel and this. For, 
events chronicled in the sixth chapter of St. John's Gospel took plaX?^ 
immediately before the Passover,^ which was on the fifteenth day ^* 
the first ecclesiastical month {Nisan\ while the Feast of Tab^^"" 

' Of course, putting aside the question 
of the arrangement into chapters, the 
reader might profitably make the experi- 
ment of arranging the Gospels into 
parta and sections, nor could he have a 
better guide to help his own investiga- 
tions than Canon Westcotfs Introduction 
to the Study of the Gospels. 

* The substantive &KdXi7^ii occurs only 
in this place, but the cognate verb re- 
peatedly, as referring to the Ascension. 

The curious interpretation of 
v/ould not even call for notice, if it 
not the authority of his name. 

' The word icai, strangely omitted 
translations, denotes Christ's faU 
mination by the side of the fnlfilmenfe 
the time. 

* The term is used in the LXX. 
denoting firmly 9etting, In conrn 
with Tp6trwirov it occurs twelve times. 


began on the same day of the seventh ecclesiastical month 
). But, except in regard to the commencement of Christ's 
T, that sixth chapter ia the only one in the Gospel of St. , 
lioh refers to the Galilean Ministry of Christ. We would ' 
, that what it records is partly intended ' to exhibit, by the 
Christ's fully developed teaching, the fully developed enmity 
Jerusalem Scribes, which led even to the defection of many 
lisciples. Thus, chapter vi. would be a connecting-link (both 
ds the teaching of Christ and the opposition to Him) between 

v., which tells of His visit at ' the Unknown Feast,' and 

vii., which records that at the Feast of Tabernacles. The 
ieven months between the Feast of Passover'' and that of ' 
cles,* and all that passed within them, are covered by this . 
mark : ' After these things Jesus walked in Galilee ; for He ' 
lot walk in Judaaa, because the Jews [the leaders of the 
] sought to kill Him.' 

now the Feast of Tabernacles was at hand. The pilgrims 
wobably arrive in Jerusalem before the opening day of the 
L For, besides the needful preparations — which would require 
ipeciallj on this Feast, when booths had to be constructed in 

live during the festive week — it was (as we remember) the 

1 practice to offer such sacrifices as might have previously 
due at any of the great Feasts to which the people might 

Remembering that five months had elapsed since the last 
"east (that of Weeks), many such sacrifices must have been 
iccordingly, the ordinary festive companies of pilgrims, which 
ravel slowly, must hjive .'itarted from Galilee some time be- 
r beginning of the Feast. These circumstances fully esplain 
Ills of the narrative. They also afford another most painful 
ion of the loneliness of Christ in His Work. His disciples 
led to understand, they misapprehended His teaching. In 
r j)ro8pectof His Death they either displayed gross ignorance, 
disputed about their future rank. And His own ' brethren ' 
believe in Him. The whole course of late events, especially 
net challenge of the Scribes for ' a sign from heaven,' had 

■ aD'l deeper muionn will also festive lectnrca commenced in the Aca- 

lemaelves, and have Uouii hinted demies thirty days before each of the 

renting of this event. great Feasts, Those who attended them 

erm 'Jews' is generally naed liy wete called Hfnvj Jiigla, in distinction 

,n that sense. to the Beiifj Challah, who attended tlie 

liing to Baba K. 113 a, regular regular Sabbath lectuiea. 


deeply ehakeii them. What was the purpose of ' Torks,* if done it 
the privacy of the circle of Christ's Apostles, in a hoose, a remote 
district, or even before an ignorant multitude ? If, claiming to he 
the Messiah, He wished to be openly ' known as snch, He most take 
other means. If He really did these things, let Him manifest 
Himself before the world — in Jerusalem, the capital of their woi)il»- 
and before those who could test the reality of His Works. Let Him 
come forward, at one of Israel's great Feasts, in the Temple, ami 
especially at this Feast which pointed to the Messianic ingathering 
of all nations. Let Him go up with them into Judsea, that so Hi» 
disciples — not the Galileans only, but all — might have the oppor- 
tunity of * gazing '* on His Works.' 

As the challeuge was not new,* so, from the worldly point of viev*- 
it can scarcely be called unreasonable. It is, in fact, the same ia. 
principle as that to which the world would now submit the claims of 
Christianity to men's acceptance. It has only this one fault, that ift- 
ignores the world's enmity to the Christ. Discipleship is not the- 
result of any outward manifestation by ' evidences ' or demonetratiiHi' 
It requires the conversion of a child-like spirit. To manifest Hint- 
self! This truly would He do, though not in their way. For thl^ 
' the season ' ^ had not yet come, though it would soon arrive. TheiX" 
' season ' — that for such Messianic manifestations as they content'- 
plated — was 'always ready.' And this naturally, for 'tiie wtn-ll ' 
could not 'hate' them; they and their demonstrations were quitie 
in accordance with the world and its views. But towards Him the 
world cherished personal hatred, because of their contrariety of jmo- 
ciple, because Christ was manifested, not to restore an earthly kin^ 
dom to Israel, but to bring the Heavenly Kingdom upon earth — ' to 
destroy the works of the Devil,' Hence, He must provoke the enmity 
of that world which lay in the Wicked One. Another manifestati<A> 
than that which they sought would He make, when His • season was 
fulfilled ; ' soon, beginning at this very Feast, continued at the nert 
and completed at the last Passover ; such manifestation of Himeelf 
as the Christ, as could alone be made in view of the essential enmity 
of the world. 

And so He let them go up in the festive company, while Himwlf 
tarried. When the noise and publicity (which He wished to avoicl) 

' The BBme lenn K'DmD {ParJie^a} is peculiarlj Hebnurtic. 

Dccnn in Babbinic language, ' Sec especially thecogtuiteooemm* 

■ The verb is the aignificaJit one, and cxpicBsions at themaniagefaut'* 

etapiei. Cena. 

* (?a(M rcmBrkB,thatthc8ty1co[reT. 4 * Kaifii, 


3 no longer to be apprehended, He aleo went ap, but privately,' CHAP. 

publicly, afl they had suggested. Here St. Luke's account begins. IV 

Lmost reads like a commentary on what the Lord had just said 

His brethren, about the enmity of the world, and His mode of 

dfestation — who would not, and who would receive Him, and 

'_ * He came unto His own, and His own received Him not. But 

nany as received Him, to them gave He power to become children 

iod . . . which were bom ... of God.' 

The first purpose of Christ Beeme to have been to take the 

e direct road to Jerusalem, through Samaria, and not to fol- 

that of the festive pilgrim-bands, which travelled to Jerusalem 
►■ogh Perjea, in order to avoid the land of their hated rivals. 

His intention was soon frastrated. In the very first Samaritan 
1^ to which the Christ had sent beforehand to prepare for Himself 

His company,* His messengers were told that the Babbi could 

be received ; that neither hospitality nor firiendly treatment 
Id be extended to One Who was going up to the Feast at Jeru- 
im. The messengers who brought back this strangely un-Oriental 
"wer met the blaster and His followers on the road. It was not 
y an outrage on common manners, but an act of open hostility to 
lel, as well as to Christ, and the ' Sons of Thunder,' whose feelings 
their Master were, perhaps, the more deeply stirred as opposition 
Him grew more fierce, proposed to vindicate the cause, alike of 
lel and its MeEsiah-King, by the open and Divine judgment of 

called down from heaven to destroy that village. Did they in 
8 connection think of the vision of Elijah, ministering to Christ 
the Mount of Transfiguration — and was this their application of 
' Truly, they knew not of what Spirit they were to be the children 
d messengers. He Who had come, not to destroy, but to save, 
inied and rebuked them, and passed from Samaritan into Jewish 
^rritoty to pursue His journey.' Perhaps, indeed. He had only 
Msed into Samaria to teach His disciples this needful lesson. The 
iew of this event just presented seems confirmed by the circum- 

' fffiirt infers from the word 'secretly,' Feast : comp. St. John vii. 11, 14. 

^the jonmej of 8t. Luke ix. CI could ' It doca not necessarily follow, that 

?* h«-e been that referred to by St. the company at etarting was a large one. 

:<^ Bat tbo fuaHJied eiprcHBion, ' as But they would have no boat nor quarters 

" »ete in secret,' oonveja to my mind ready to receiTc them in Samaria. Hence 

1^ a conbsst U> tbe public pilgrim' the despatch of messengers. 

''"\ in which it was the cuBtoin to travel ' According to the best M88. the 

JMbe Feasts — a pnhlicity, which His words (in fit. Luke ii, E4): 'Even a« 

'WttucQ' spe<^ally desired at this time. Eliaa did,' and those (in verses 66 and 

^e«, the 'in secret' of 8t. John 66) from 'and said . , . ' to 'save 

^^^ Rfer Dot so much to the journey tbetn,' arc interpolated. 
*■ to lbs ^jpeannce of Christ at tbe 


stance, that St. Matthew lays the Bcene immediately folloi 
the other side ' — that is, in the Decapolis.' 

It was a journey of deepest interest and importance. For, il 
was decisive not only as regarded the Master, but those who followwl 
Kim. Henceforth it must not be, as in former times, but wholly 
and exclusively, as into suffering and death. It is thus that we view 
the nest three incidents of the way. Two of them find, also, i 
place in the Gosi)el by St. Matthew," although in a different con- 
nection, in accordance with the plan of that Gospel, wliich groupe 
together the Teaching of Christ, with but secondary att«ntJoa to 
chronological succession. 

It seems that, as, after the rebuff of these Samaritans, they 
' were going ' towards another, and a Jewish village, ' one " of tlie 
company, and, as we learn from St. Matthew, ' a Scribe,' in the gene- 
rous enthusiasm of the moment — ^perhaps, stimulated by the wrong 
of the Samaritans, perhaps, touched by the love which would rebuke 
the zeal of the disciples, but had no word of blame for the unlcind- 
ness of others^broke into a spontaneous declaration of readiness to 
follow Him absolutely and everywhere. Like the benediction of the 
woman who heard Him," it was one of those outbursts of an enthu- 
siasm which His Presence awakened in every susceptible heart. But 
there was one eventuality which that Scribe, and all of like enthu- 
siasm, reckoned not with — the utter homelessness of the (Jhrist in this 
world — and this, not from accidental circumstances, but because He 
was 'the Son of Man.'" And there is here also material for stiH. 
deeper thought in the fact that this man was ' a Scribe,' and ye*lf 
had not gone up to the Feast, but tarried near Christ — was 'one' c*"^ 
those that followed Him now, and was capable of such feelingsl ^ 
How many, whom we regard as Scribes, may be in analogous relatio' 
to the Christ, and yet how much of fair promise has failed to ripe: 
into reality in view of the homelessness of Christ and ChristianifcJ 
in this world — the strangership of suffering which it involves *« 

' The word, tu, liere deaignates a 
certain one— one, vi»,, of the company. 
The BTTangement o( the words lui- 
doubl^dly isi'fne "/ "*« eemj/asj/ said 
unto Him by the way,' and nut ns either 
in ths A. V. or E. V. Comp, Canon Cooi, 
ad Inc.. la ilie ' Spenker'i Commentary.' 

' Wemark. th»t thedeBignation'Bonof 
Man ' is here tor the first lime applied to 
Christ by 8t. Matthew. May this bittory 
h»Te been Inserted in the FiTst Qospel in 
this oonnection.becBuse it V 

.o this 


the Son at Han by the sons of men— >9 i^ 
to my : Leani the meaning of the repr^ 
Bentuiive title ; Son of Man. ina world 0^ 
men who would not receive Hita! Rf* 
the mare narked, that it immedisteitr 
precwdes the iirst application on tlie p«* 
of men of the title ' ISon of God ' to Cbiirt 
in this Gospel (St. Malt. viii. 29). 

• It is scarcely neceasiry to discius the 
BuggestioQ, that the Drat two refenrad te 
in the narrative were either Baxtfaolonwv 
and Philip, or else JndsB lawriot 


those who would follow, not aoiuewbere, but absolutely, and every- chap. 
where? IV 

The intenseness of the Belf-denial involved in following Christ, " 

and itB contrariety to all that waa commonly received among men, 
was, porposely, iounediately furi:her brought out. This Scribe had 
proffered to follow Jesus. Another of His disciples He asked to 
follow Him, and that in circumstances of peculiar trial and difH- 
culty.' The expression ' to follow ' a Teacher would, in those days, ' **'■ li*» 
be nmversally nnderstood as implying discipleabip. Again, no other 
duty would be regarded as more sacred than that they, on whom the 
obligation naturally devolved, should bury the dead. To this every- 
thing mnst give way — even prayer, and the study of the Law.'' J?"j{^ 
Lastly, we feel morally certain, that, when Christ called this disciple "dowioi 
to follow Him, He was fully aware that at that very moment hia ^**i*- 
Either lay dead. Thus, He called him not only to homelessness — for >[egiiLi» 
tins he might have been prepared — but to set aside what alike 
natural feeling and the Jewish Law seemed to impose on him as the 
most sacred duty. In the seemingly strange reply, which Christ 
made to the request to be allowed first to bury bis father, we pass 
over the consideration that, according to Jewish law, the burial and 
moaniiDg for a dead father, and the subsequent purifications, would 
have occupied many days, so that it might have been difficult, 
pertiaps impossible, to overtjike Christ. We would rather abide by 
tte nmple words of Christ. They teach us this very solemn and 
Sfarehing lesson, that there are higher duties than either those of 
"le Jewish Law, or even of natural reverence, and a higher call than 
tnatof man. No doubt Christ bad here in view the near call to the 
SevcDty — of whom this disciple was to be one — to ' go and preach 
'he Kingdom of God.' When the direct call of Christ to any work 
''•Biles — that is, if we are sure of it from His own words, and not (^as, 
^ ! too often we do) only infer it by our own reasoning on His 
*W(i« — then every other call must give way. For, duties can never 
he in conflict — and this duty about the living and life must take 
fwcedence of that about death and the dead. Nor must we hesi- 
***«, because we know not in what form this work for Christ may 
""ne. There are critical momenta in our inner history, when to post- 
pone the inmiediate call, is really to reject it; when to go and bury the 
''(•d— even though it were a dead fether— were to die ourselves ! 

Tet another hindrance to following Christ was to be faced. 
Aootlier in the company that followed Christ would go with Him, 
hat he asked permission first to go and bid farewell to those whom 




he had left in his home. It abnost seems as if this request "Zia/ 
been one of those ^ tempting ' questions, addressed to Christ. Unt^ 
even if otherwise, the farewell proposed was not like that of Elis^ 
nor like the supper of Levi-Matthew. It was rather like the year 
which Jephtha's daughter would have with her companions, ere ful- 
filling the vow. It shows, that to follow Christ was regarded as a 
duty, and to leave those in the earthly home as a trial ; and it 
betokens, not merely a divided heart, but one not fit for the Kingd(Hn 
of God. For, how can he draw a straight furrow in which to cast 
the seed, who, as he puts his hand to the plough, looks around or 
behind him? 

Thus, these are the three vital conditions of following Christ: 
absolute self-denial and homelessness in the world ; immediate and 
entire self-surrender to Christ and His Work ; and a heart and affec- 
tions simple, undivided, and set on Christ and His Work, to which 
there is no other trial of parting like that which would involve 
parting from Him, no other or higher joy than that of following 
Him. In such spirit let them now go after Christ in His hut 
journey — and to such work as He will appoint them ! 




<St.Liike 1 

Although, for the reasons explained in the previous chapter, the CEAP. 

exact succeBsion of events cannot be absolutely determined, it seems V 

most likely, that it was on His progress southwards at this time that '"^ 

Jems ' designated ' ' those ' seventy ' ' * others,' who were to herald 

Hia arrival in every town and village. Even the circumstance, that 

tlie instnietions to them are so similar to, and yet distinct from, those 

fonnerly given to the Twelve, seems to point to them as those from 

whom the Seventy are to be distinguished as 'other.' We judge, 

that they were sent forth at this time, first, from the Gospel of 

St. Lake, where this whole section appears a distinct and separate 

fewrd, presumably, chronologically arranged ; secondly, from the fit- 

leas of Buch a mission at that particular period, when Jesus made 

ffi* last Missionary progress towards Jerusalem ; and, thirdly, from 

the Unlikelihood, if not impossibility, of taking such a public step 

"/to" the persecution which broke out after His appearance at 

JerugaleiQ on the Feast of Tabernacles. At any rate, it could not 

have Uken place later than in the period between the Feast of 

"beniacles and that of the Dedication of the Temple, since, after 

"■at, Jesus ' walked no more openly among the Jews.' ■ • st John 

With all their similarity, there are notable differences between 
we Mission of the Twelve and this of ' the other Seventy.' Let it be 
"oted, that the former is recorded by the three Evangelists, so that 
'l>ere coold have been no confusion on the part of St. Luke.*" But j^'?!'*- 
«■* misaion of the Twelve was on tiieir appointment to the Apostolate ; ^1"^ ' 
■t n» evangelistic and missionary ; and it was in confirmation and ^<' "■ i 
■"•lufestation of the ' power and authority ' given to them. We 

' FeAipa thu may be a fuller Engliali 
•Wwlent tban 'sfipoint.' 





• "Sam, xi. 

» St. Matt. 
xl. 7-19 

« St. Matt. 
xl. 20-'U ; 
comp. vrlth 
8t. Luke X. 

regard it, therefore, as symbolical of the Apostolate just instituted,, 
with its work and authority. On the other hand, no power or 
authority was formally conferred on the Seventy, their mission bemg 
only temporary, and, indeed, for one definite purpose ; its primaij 
object was to prepare^ for the coming of the Master in the places to 
which they were sent ; and their selection was from the wider cirde 
of disciples, the number being now Seventy instead of Twelve. Even 
these two numbers, as well as the difference in the functions of the 
two classes of messengers, seem to indicate that the Twelve symboU 
ised the princes of the tribes of Israel, while the Seventy were the 
sjrmbolical representatives of these tribes, like the seventy elders 
appointed to assist Moses.* ' This symbolical meaning of the number 
Seventy continued among the Jews. We can trace it in the LXX. 
(supposed) translators of the Bible into Greek, and in the seventy 
numbers of the Sanhedrin, or supreme court.^ 

There was something very significant in this appearance of 
Christ's messengers, by two and two, in every place He was about to 
visit. As John the Baptist had, at the first, heralded the Coming of 
Christ, so now two heralds api>eared to solemnly announce His Advenfc- 
at the close of His Ministry ; as John had sought, as the repre-*^ 
sentative of the Old Testament Church, to prepare His Way, so they ^^ 
as the representatives of the New Testament Church. In both 
the preparation sought was a moral one. It was the natio: 
summons to open the gates to the rightful King, and accept His rul^ 
Only, the need was now the greater for the fidlure of John's mission. 
through the misunderstanding and disbelief of the nation.** This con 
junction with John the Baptist and the failure of his mission, 
regarded national results, accounts for the insertion in St. Matthew* 
Gospel of part of the address delivered on the Mission of the Sevent^^ 
immediately after the record of Christ's rebuke of the nationtfc ^ 
rejection of the Baptist.® For St. Matthew, who (as well as St, Mark 
records not the Mission of the Seventy — simply because (as 
explained) the whole section, of which it forms part^ is peculiar 
St. Luke's Gospel — reports Hhe Discourses' connected with it 
other, and to them congruous, connections. 

We mark, that, what may be termed ^ the Prefiuie ' to the Missio^^ 
of the Seventy, is given by St. Matthew (in a somewhat faller fomL^ 

> In Bemidb. R. 15, ed. Warsh. p. 64 h, 
the mode of electing these Seventy is thus 
desciibed. Moses chose six from every 
tribe, and then put into au am seventy- 
two lots, of which seventy had the word 

Saken (Elder) inscribed on them* wliil< 
two were blanks. The latter are 
posed to have been drawn by Sldad aa^ 
^ Comp. Sanh. L 6. 


as that to the appointment and mission of the Twelve Apostles ; ^ and chap. 
it may have been, that words kindred had preceded both. Partially, v 
indeed, the expressions reported in St. Luke x. 2 had been em- -st. Matt7 
ployed long before.** Those 'multitudes' throughout Israel — ^nay, bstjohniv 
those also which ^ are not of that flock ' — appeared to His view like ^^ 
sheep without a true shepherd's care, * distressed and prostrate,' * and 
their mute misery and only partially conscious longing appealed, and 
not in vain, to His Divine compassion. This constituted the ultimate 
ground of the Mission of the Apostles, and now of that of the Seventy, 
into a harvest that was truly great. Compared with the extent of 
the field, and the urgency of the work, how few were the labourers ! 
Yet, as the field was God's, so also could He alone * thrust forth 
labourers ' willing and able to do His work, while it must be ours to 
piay that He would be pleased to do so. 

On these introductory words,® which ever since have formed * the « st. Luke x. 
bidding prayer ' of the Church in her work for Christ, followed the 
commission and special directions to the thirty-five pairs of disciples 
who went on this embassy. In almost every particular they are the 
same as those formerly given to the Twelve.* We mark, however, 
that both the introductory and the concluding words addressed to the 
Apostles are wanting in what was said to the Seventy. It was not 
necessary to warn them against going to the Samaritans, since the 
direction of the Seventy was to those cities of Persea and Judaea, on 
tb^ road to Jerusalem, through which Christ was about to pass. Nor 
vr^re they armed with precisely the same supernatural powers as the 
X*^welve.* Natiu^Uy, the personal directions as to their conduct were * st. Matt. 
irk both cases substantially the same. We mark only three pecu- st.Lukex.9 
liaiities in those addressed to the Seventy. The direction to * salute 
^o man by the way ' was suitable to a temporary and rapid mission, 
^nich might hav^ been sadly interrupted by making or renewing 
^naintances. Both the Mishnah • and the Talmud ^ lay it down, •Ber.zob 
^^t prayer was not to be interrupted to salute even a king, nay, '^^-^^^ 
^ ^nccSl a serpent that had wound round the foot.' On the other 
^d, the Rabbis discussed the question, whether the reading of the 
yf^^Tna and of the portion of the Psalms called the HaUel might be 
^^rrupted at the close of a paragraph, from respect for a person, or 
J^terrupted in the middle, from motives of fear.* All agreed, that «Bcr. i4» 
^^ediately before prayer no one should be saluted, to prevent 

ifL ^he fiiBt word means liteiaUy * torn.' ' See Book III. ch. xxrii. 

j^^^Qoond oocnra sixty-two times in the ' But it might be .interrupted for a 

r^r^- as equivalent for the Hebrew scorpion, Ber. 33 a. Comp. page 141, 

^'"Phil) HiikHeh, piojido, abjicio. note 1. 


BOOK distraction, and it was advised rather to summarise or to cut short 

rv than to break into prayer, though the latter might be admissible in 

* Bar. 14 a; caso of absolute uecessity,* None of these provisions, however, 
^ * seems to have been in the mind of Christ. If any parallel is to be 

sought, it would be foimd in the similar direction of Elisha to 
Gehazi, when sent to lay the prophet's staff on the dead child of the 

The other two peculiarities in the address to the Seventy seem 
«» St. Luke X. verbal rather than real. The expression,^ ^ if the Son of Peace be 
« St. Matt. X. there,' is a Hebraism, equivalent to * if the house be worthy,' •and 
" refers to the character of the head of the house and the tone of the 

household.* Lastly, the direction to eat and drink such things as 
^ St. Luke X. were set before them ^ is only a further explanation of the command 
to abide in the house which had received them, without seeking fof 
better entertainment.* On the other hand, the whole most importan4> 
close of the address to the Twelve — which, indeed, forms by fer th^^ 

* St. Matt, largest part of it ® — is wanting in the commission to the Seventy" -s 

xi. 16-42 ox o rf 

thus clearly marking its merely temporary character. 

In St. Luke's Gospel, the address to the Seventy is followed by 

* St. Luke X. denunciation of Chorazin and Bethsaida.' This is evidently in it 


right place there, after the Ministry of Christ in Gralilee had beei 
completed and finally rejected. In St. Matthew's Gospel, it stand^^ ^ 
(for a reason already indicated) immediately after the Lord's rebuke ^ 
« St. Matt, of the popular rejection of the Baptist's message.^ The * woe ' pi 
nounced on those cities, in which * most of His mighty works 
done,' is in proportion to the greatness of their privileges. TW^ ^ 
denunciation of Chorazin and Bethsaida is the more remarkabl^^y 
that Chorazin is not otherwise mentioned in the Gospels, nor y^^^ 
any miracles recorded as having taken place in (the western) Betfc^* 
saida. From this two inferences seem inevitable. First, this histo^^ 
must be real. If the whole were legendary, Jesus would not 
represented as selecting the names of places, which the writer 
not connected with the legend. Again, apparently no record 
been preserved in the Gospels of most of Christ's miracles — oft 
those being narrated, which were necessary in order to present Jes*^^ 

* Comp. Job xxi. 9, both in the original tal an alteration would not have 

and the Targum. introduced in such an indirect maim 

- Canon Cook (ad loc.) regards this as l^sidcs, the direction is not to eat tlt^jj 

evidence that the Seventy were also sent food, but any kind of food. LasUjr 

to the Samaritans ; and as implying per- Christ had introduced so vital a chai! ^ 

mission to eat of their food, whid^ the the lat^r difficulty of St. Peter, and 

Jews held to be forbidden. To me it vision on the subject, wonlcl not 

conveys the opposite, since so fundamen- intelligible. 


as the Christ, in accordance with the respective plans on which each chap. 
of the Gospels was constructed.* V 

As already stated, the denunciations were in proportion to the •st-JohxT 
privileges, and hence to the guilt, of the unbelieving cities. Chorazin '^* ^^ 
and Bethsaida are compared with Tyre and Sidon, which under 
similar admonitions would have repented,* while Capernaum, which, 
as for so long the home of Jesus, had truly * been exalted to heaven,' * 
is compared with Sodom. And such guilt involved greater punish- 
ment. The very site of Bethsaida and Chorazin cannot be fixed 
with certainty. The former probably represents the * Fisherton ' of 
Capernaum,' the latter seems to have almost disappeared from the 
shore of the Lake. St. Jerome places it two miles from Capernaum. 
If so, it may be represented by the modem Kerazeh, somewhat to 
the north-west of Capernaum. The site would correspond with the 
name. For Kerazeh is at present ^ a spring with an insignificant 
ruin above it,'* and the name Chorazin may well be derived from 
Oheraz (rtT3) a water-jar — Cherozin, or * Chorazin,' the water-jars. 
If 80, we can readily understand that the * Fisherton ' on the south 
side of Capernaum, and the well-known springs, ^Chorazin,' on 
tlic other side of it, may have been the frequent scene of Christ's 
rEurades. This explains also, in part, why the miracles there wrought 
ii^ not been told as well as those done in Capernaum itself. In the 
X*&lmad a Chorazin, or rather Chorzim, is mentioned as celebrated 
for its wheat.* But as for Capernaum itself — standing on that vast »» ^ren«oh. 
field of ruins and uptmrned stones which marks the site of the xeuiay^^p. 
^^acdem Tell H&rriy we feel that no description of it could be more 
I^ictorially true than that in which Christ prophetically likened the 
^^ity in its downfJEdl to the desolateness of death and * Hades.' 

Whether or not the Seventy actually returned to Jesus before the 

^wt of Tabernacles,* it is convenient to consider in this connection 

^ te regult of their Mission. It had filled them with the * joy ' of assur- 

^^ce ; nay, the result had exceeded their expectations, just as their 

^th had gone beyond the mere letter unto the spirit of His Words. As 

^*^y reported it to Him, even the demons had been subject to them 

^Wigh His Name. In this they had exceeded the letter of Christ's 

' ^titing • in sackcloth and ashes ' no meaning. We have, therefore, adopted 

JJ" the practice in public humiliations the reading of Alfitrd, Meyer^ &c., which 

x*^ il. 1 ). only differs in tense from the A. V. 

' Hie R. v., following what are re- ' See Book III. ch. xzzi. 

Med as some of the best MSS., renders * Canon Tristram. 

^ ^Btenogatively : ' Shalt thou be ex- ^ Godct infers this from the use of the 

*^' kc ? Bat such a question is not word * returned,* St. Luke z. 17. 
^ without precedent, but really yields 


BOOK commission ; but as they made experiment of it, their fidth had 
IV grown, and they had applied His command to ^ heal the sick ' to the 

^ ' worst of all suflFerers, those grievously vexed by demons. And, a» 

always, their faith was not disappointed. Nor could it be otherwise. 
The great contest had been long decided ; it only remained for the 
faith of the Church to gather the fruits of that Prince. The victoiy 
of Light and Life had vanquished the Prince of Darkness and DeatL 

•St. John The prince of this worid must be cast out.* In spirit, Christ gazed 
on * Satan fallen as lightning from heaven.' As one has aptly para- 
phrased it : * While you cast out his subjects, I saw the prince him- 
self fall. It has been asked, whether the words of Christ referred to 
any particular event, such as His Victory in the Temptation.* But any 
such limitation would imply grievous misunderstanding of the whole- 
So to speak, the fall of Satan is to the bottomless pit ; ever going oi». 
to the final triumph of Christ. As the Lord beholds him, he is fiille 
from heaven — from the seat of power and of worship; f or, his maater^"^ 
is broken by the Stronger than he. And he is fallen like lightning, 

k Rov. xu. ijj i^g rapidity, dazzling splendour, and destructiveness.^ Yet as 
perceive it, it is only demons cast out in His Name. For, still 
this fight and sight continued to all ages of the present dispensatio: 
Each time the faith of the Church casts out demons — whether a - 
they formerly, or as they presently vex men, whether in the lighte 
combat about possession of the body, or in the sorer fight abo 
possession of the soul — as Christ beholds it, it is ever Satan fiJlec "J- 
For, He sees of the travail of His soul, and is satisfied ! And so also wm^s 
there joy in heaven over every sinner that repenteth. 

The authority and power over * the demons,' attained by faitfc^t 
was not to pass away with the occasion that had called it forth. Tl^ ^ 
Seventy were the representatives of the Church in her work of pr^^^ 
paring for the Advent of Christ. As already indicated, the sight ^^^^ 
Satan fallen from heaven is the continuous history of the Churcfc** 
What the faith of the Seventy had attained was now to be 
permanent to the Church, whose representatives they were. For, 
words in which Christ now gave authority and power to tread o: 
serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the Enemy, 
the promise that nothing should hurt them, could not have 
addressed to the Seventy for a Mission which had now come to 

> Godetf ad loc. else, do wc mark not only differenoe, \w 

« So far from seeing here, with Wiinsch^ oantraH, to Jewish views, 

(ad loc), Jewish notions about Satan, I ■ The word over (* on,* A. V.) most 

hold that in the Satanology of the New connected with * power.' 
Testament, perhaps more than anywhere 


■end, except in so far as they represented the Church Universal. It chap. 
is almoflt needless to add, that those ' serpents and scorpions ' are v 
not to be literally but symbolically understood." Yet it is not this •""cwnp. p*. 
power and authority vhich is to be the main joy either of the Church jurk iVl ia 
or the individual, but * the fact that our names are written in heaven.' 
And BO Christ brings vb back to His great teaching about the need 
of becoming children, and wherein lies the secret of true greatness 
in the Kingdom. 

It is beautifully in the spirit of all this, when we read that the joy 
of the disciples was met by that of the Master, and that His teach- 
ing presently merged into a prayer of thanksgiving. Throughout 
the occurrences since the Transfiguration, we have noticed an in- 
creasing antithesis to the teaching of the Rabbis. But it almost 
reached its climax in the thanksgiving, that the Father in heaven 
had hid these things from the wise and the understanding, and re- 
vealed them unto babes. As we view it in the light of those times, 
we biow that ' the wise and understanding ' — the Kabbi and the 
Scribe — could not, from their standpoint, have perceived tbem j nay, 
that it is matter of never-ending thanks that, not what they, but 
^*"l)at'the babes,' understood, was — as alone it could be — the subject 
*>f the Heavenly Father's revelation. We even tremble to think how it 
^'cmldhave fared with 'thebabes,' if 'the wise and understanding' had 
™^dpart with them in the knowledge revealed. And so it must ever 
*^*^, not only the faw of the Kingdom and the fundamental principle 
*^*" Divine Revelation, but matter for thanksgiving, that, not as ' wise 
■"* *ad understanding,' but only as ' babes' — as 'converted,' 'like chil- 
*i-«"en' — we can share in that knowledge which maketh wise unto 
**^VBtion. And this truly is the Gos^wl, and the Father's good 

The words,*" with which Christ turned from this Address to the "st-Lnkax. 

^«Taity and thanksgi\-ing to God, seem almost like the Father's 

^*swer to the prayer of the Sou, They refer to, and explain, the 

Authority which Jesus had bestowed on His Church : ' All things 

I *ere delivered ' to Me of My Father ; ' and they afford the highest 

\ . ' Ipmame, that in the same sjmbol- ' The figure in one unrrcnt in Horipture 

I ^ aenae miut be nndGrstood the Hag- (comp. Exod. zxxii. 32 ; la. iv. 3 ; Dan. 

BWi about a great Rabbinic Saint, lii. 1). Bat thu Habbis took it in a 

*W ■ Kipent bit withont harming graaalj' literal manner, and spoiie of three 

^ ind then immediately (lied. The books opened every Sew Year's Day — 

'''U faroo^t it to his disciples with the those ot the pious, the wicked, and the 

*<nli: It U not the serpent that killetb, intermediaie (Bosh baSb. 16 b). 
^ ia (Ber. 33 a). * This U a common Jewish formnla : 

'The word 'rather' in the A. V. is •yxh pVI' 
^'"'iou- • The tense should here be marked. 



rationale for the fact, that these things had been hid from the wise 
and revealed unto babes. For, as no man, only the Father, could have 

" full knowledge of the Son, and, conversely, no man, only the Son, 
had true knowledge of the Father, it followed, that this knowledge 
came to us, not of wisdom or learning, hut only through the Revela- 
tion of Christ : ' No one kuoweth W^o the Son is, save the Father; 
and Who the Father is, save the Son, and he to whomsoeyer the Sob 
willeth to reveal Him.' 

St. Matthew, who also records this — although in a different 
connection, immediately after the denunciation of the unbelief of 
Choraziu, Bethsaida, and Capernaum — concludes this section by 
words which have ever since been the grand text of those who, 
following in the wake of the Seventy, have been ambassadors for 
Christ,' On the other hand, St. Luke concludes this part of his 

,. narrative by adducing words equally congruous to tlie occasion," 
which, indeed, are not new in the mouth of the Ixird." From their 

B suitableness to what had preceded, we can have little doubt that 
both that which St. Matthew, and that which St. Luke, reports was 
spoken on this occasion. Because knowledge of the Father came 
only through the Son, and because these things were hidden from, 
the wise and revealed to ' babes,' did the gracious Lord open Hi«. 
Arms so wide, and bid all ' that laboured and were heavy laden com^^ 
to Him. These were the sheep, distressed and prostrate, whnn — -^ 
to gather, that He might give them rest. He had sent forth th^^e 
Seventy on a work, for which He had prayed the Father to thru^K-t 
forth labourers, and which He has since entrusted to the faith an -^d 
service of love of the Church, And the true wisdom, which qualifi es ' -d 
for the Kingdom, was to take up His yoke, which would be font^ d 
easy, and a lightsome burden, not like that unbearable yoke -^f 

" Rabbinic conditions ; ^ and the tnie understanding to be sought, w^as 
by learning of Him. In that wisdom of entering the Kingdom t^y 
taking up its yoke, and in that knowledge which came by learning *» 
Him, Christ was Himself alike the true lesson aud the beat TeaoliC" 
for those ' babes.' For He is meek and lowly in heart. He K»" 
done what He taught, and He taught what He had done ; and bo^ 
by coming unto Him, would true rest be found for the soul. 

These words, as recorded by St. Matthew — the Evangelist of tii» 
Jews — must have sunk the deeper into the hearts of Christ's JewisJi 

' Jfrioiif JfAm writeB : ■ In this "All" 
thou art lo inolaiie thyself, and not to 
think that Ihuu dost not belong thereto ; 

.0 suarch for anotbel it^Utet 


lieajrers, that they came in their own old familiar form of speech, yet chap. 
^tL such contrast of spirit. One of the most common figurative y 

expressions of the time was that of *the yoke' (Siy), for submission ' ^ ' 

to an occupation or obligation. Thus, we read not only of * the yoke 

of the Law,' but of that of * earthly governments,' and ordinary ^ civil 

obligations.' * Very instructive for the understanding of the figure •Aboth.ui.ft 

is this paraphrase of Cant. i. 10: *How beautiful is their neck for 

beajing the yoke of Thy statutes; and it shall be upon them like the 

yake on the neck of the ox that plougheth in the field, and provideth 

focxi for himself and his master.' ^ * This yoke might be * cast off,' as ^ Targnm, 

the ten tribes had cast off that * of God,' and thus brought on them- 

selvestheir exile.® On the other hand, to ^ take upon oneself the yoke ' ^ shemotu 

(^^y Snp) meant to submit to it of free choice and deliberate reso- 

lation. Thus, in the allegorism of the Midrash, in the inscription, 

Prov. XXX. 1, concerning ^ Agur, the son of Jakeh ' — which is viewed 

^ a symbolical designation of Solomon — the word ^ Massa,' rendered 

"^ the Authorised Version ^ prophecy,' is thus explained in reference 

^ Solomon : * Masaa^ because he lifted on himself {Naaa) the yoke 

^^ the Holy One, blessed be He.' ^ And of Isaiah it was said, that * Mi<Jr. 

u , •' Bhooh. Tob 

^^ had been privileged to prophesy of so many blessings, * because ed. Lcmt. p. 
7^ had taken upon himself the yoke of the Kingdom of Heaven with 
J^^,'*' And, as previously stated, it was set forth that in the *Yaikutii. 

< ^1 X y p. 48 fi. 

^^Ufma^ or Creed — which was repeated everyday — the words, Deut. §275,ime8io 
^* 4-9, were recited before those in xi. 13-21, so as first generally bottom 
^ *take upon ourselves the yoke of the Kingdom of Heaven, and 
^^Ij afterwards that of the commandments.'^' And this yoke all 'Ber. ii. 2 
^^el had taken upon itself, thereby gaining the merit ever imputed 
*^ them. 

Yet, practically, ' the yoke of the Kingdom ' was none other than 

^*^t * of the Law ' and ^ of the commandments ; ' one of laborious 

I^^Tfonnances and of impossible self-righteousness. It was ^ unbear- 

^ole,' not * the easy ' and lightsome yoke of Christ, in which the 

^^ingdom of God was of faith, not of works. And, as if themselves 

^ hear witness to this, we have this saying of theirs, terribly signifi- 

^cant in this connection : ^ Not like those formerly (the first), who 

^ade for themselves the yoke of the Law easy and light ; but like 

^tose after them (those afteiwards), who made the yoke of the Law 

* Similarly we read of * the yoke of in the great Academy of Jerusalem by 

'^P^tance ' (Moed K. 16 J), of that *of Elijah the prophet to a question pro- 

Jf^.' or rather * of flesh and blood ' pounded to him by a student. 

vAb. de R. Nath. 20), &c. • Comp. * Sketches of Jewish Social 

^^ is mentioned as an answer given Life/ p. 270. 




upon them heavy ' ' * And, ladeed, this voluntary making of the yc^^ 
as heavy as poaaible, the taking on themselves as many obligations^ 

" possible, was the ideal of Rabbinic piety. There was, therefore, pe ^g 
liar teaching and comfort in the words of Christ ; and well might J{g 

t add, as St. Luke rei>orts,*' that blessed were they who saw and h&«/^ 
these things.' For, that Messianic Kingdom, which had been the 
object of rapt vision and earnest longing to prophets and kings of o^ 
had now become reality.* 

Abounding as this history is in contrasts, it seems not unlikelji 

■ that the scene next recorded by St. Luke" stands in its right place< 
Such au inquiry on the part of a * certain lawyer,' as to what he 
should do to inherit eternal life, together with Christ's Parabolic 
teaching about the Good Samaritan, is e^'idently congruous to the 
previous teaching of Christ about entering into the Kingdom of 
Heaven. Possibly, this Scribe may have understood the words of thfi 
Master about these things being hid from the wise, and the need of 
taking up the yoke of the Kingdom, as enforcing the news of tho8« 
Rabbinic teachers, who laid more stress upon good works than upon 
study. Perhaps himself belonged to that minority, although his 
question was intended to tempt — to try whether the Master would 
stand the Rabbinic test, alike morally and dialect ically. And, without 
at present entering on the Parable which gives Christ's final answ^ 
(and which will best be considered with the others belonging to that 
period), it will be seen how peculiarly suited it was to the state of 
mind just supposed. 

From this interruption, which, but for the teaching of Chrirt 
connected with it, would have formed a terrible discord va the 
heavenly hiuTnouy of this journey, we turn to a far other scene. I' 
follows in the course of St. Luke's narrative, and we have no reaajn 
to consider it. out of its proper place. If so, it must mark the olos^ 
of Christ's journey to the Feast of Tabernacles, since the home of 
Martha and Mary, to which it introduces us, was in Bethany, close 
to Jerusalem, almost one of its suburbs. Other indications, confir- 
matory of this note of time, are not wanting. Thus, the history 

■ Id a rapt description of ILe Uessiatiic 
gloiy (Pesikta, cd. liuber, H9 o, end) we 
read that Ismel shall exult in Hia light, 
sajiDg : ' Bloased the honr in whidi the 
Messiah hiLs been created ; bleeacd the 
womb that bare Him ; blessed the eye 
that seen Him ; blessed the eye that is 
deemed worthy to behold Him, lot tbe 

iitt.' It is ft Etmn}^ coincidence, to W^ 
the least, thtit this posiuige (xxon in ^ 
■ Lecture ' on ihe portion of the profdwC' 
(Is, Ixi. ID), which at present i» reM U* 
the Synagogues on a Sabbntli cloM l^ 
the Feast of Tabemndei. 

' The mme words were spoken on ^ 
previous occasion (St. Matt xUU. 


» ■ 


vhicb follo\ra that of the home of Bethany, when one of His disciples 
asks Him to teach them to pray, as the Baptist had similarly taught 
his fcdlowers, seems to indicate, that they were then on the scene 
of John's former labours — north-east of Bethany ; and, hence, that 
it occorred on Christ's return ^m Jerusalem. Again, &om the 
oarratiTe of Christ's reception in the house of Martha, we gather 
that Jesns had arrived in Bethany with His disciples, but that 
fift alone vas the gaest of the two sisters.* We infer that Christ • 
bad dismissed His disciples to go into the neighbouring City for the 
Feast, while Himself tarried in Bethany. Lastly, with all this agrees 
">6 notice in St. John vii. 14, that it was not at the beginning, but 
'about the midst of the feast,' that ' Jesus went up into the Temple.' 
^though travelling on the two first festive days was not actually 
"'Jawful, yet we can scarcely conceive that Jesus would have done 
•* — especially on the Feast of Tabernacles ; and the inference is 
obvious, that Jesus had tarried in the immediate neighbourhood, as 
*e know He did at Bethany in the house of Martha and Mary.' 

Other things, also, do so explain themselves — notably, the absence 
of the brother of Martha and Mary, who probably spent the festive 
d^ya in the City itself. It was the beginning of the Feast of Taber- 
nacles, and the scene recorded would take place in the open leafy booth 
TOich served as the sitting apartment during the festive week. For, 
according to law, it was duty during the festive week to eat, sleep, 
Pf^y, study — in short, to live — in these booths, which were to be con- 
"tracted of the boughs of living trees.' And, although this was not 
a^lutely obligatory on women,'' yet, the rule which bade all make » 
' the booth the principal, and the house only the secondary dwelling,' ■= • 
^oold induce them to make this leafy tent at least the sitting apart- 
laent aUke for men and women. And, indeed, those autumn-days 
'ere just the season when it would be joy to sit in these delightful 
«»1 retieats— the memorials of Israel's pilgrim-days ! They were 
high enough, and yet not too high ; chiefly open in front ; close 
^ogh to be shady, and yet not so close as to exclude sunlight and 
V- Sach would be the apartment in which what is recorded passed ; 
*'"li it we add that this booth stood probably in the court, we can 
^Qie to ourselves Martha moving forwards and backwards on her 
^ errands, and seeing, as she passed again and again, Mary still 
itting a rapt listener, not heeding what passed around ; and, lastly, 

Ho one »ho reads 8t, John xi. can nor heDoethattheirhomewasin Bethany. 
*™»t the peraoni there introdaoed ' Comp. 'The Temple and its 8er- 

*">wllatthaaiidHai7i>f thu hiatoiy, vioea,' p. 237, ic. 

"a-n. L 


how the elder sistei could, as the language of verse 40 implies, enbr 
30 suddenly the Master's Presence, bringing her complaint. 

To understand this history, we must dismiss &om oar mindi 
preconceived, though, perhaps, attractive thoughts. There ii no 
evidence that the household of Bethany had previously belonged to 
the circle of Christ's professed discipIeB. It was, as the whole histoty 
shows, a wealthy home. It consisted of two sisters— the elder, Jfortts 
(a not uncommon Jewish name,' being the feminine of Mar,* and eqni- 
valent to our word 'mistress'); the younger, Jtfary; and their brother 
Lazarus, or, Laasar? Although we know not how it came, yet, 
evidently, the house was Martha's, and into it she received Jesus m 
His arrival in Bethany. It would have been no uncommon occm- 
rence in Israel for a pious, wealthy lady to receive a great BabU 
into her house. Bat the present was not an ordinary case. Martin 
must have heard of Him, even if she had not seen Him. BnE, 
indeed, the whole narrative implies,' that Jesus had come to Bethu? 
with the view of accepting the hospitality of Martha, which pro- 
bably bad been proffered when some of those ' Seventy,' sojoumiiig 
in the worthiest house at Bethany, had announced the near arrint 
of the Master. Still, her bearing affords only indication of being 
drawn towards Christ — at most, of a sincere desire to learn the good 
news, not of actual discipleship. 

And so Jesus came — and, with Him and in Him, Heaven's ofo 
Light and Peace. He was to lodge in one of the booths, the siste* 
in the house, and the great booth in the middle of the courtjanl 
would be the common living apartment of all. It could not hare 
been long after His arrival — it must have been almost immediatelfi 
that the sisters felt they had received more than an Angel nnawan*. 
How best to do Him honour, was equally the thought of both. To 
Martha it seemed, as if she could not do enough in showing Him iQ 
hospitality. And, indeed, this festive season was a busy time for the 
mistress of a wealthy household, especially in the near neighbourhood 
of Jerusalem, whenqe her brother might, after the first two feativ© 
days, bring, at any time that week, honoured guests with him fromth* 
City. To theae cares was now added that of doing sufficient honoii*" 
to such a Guest — for she, also, deeply felt His greatness. And so ah^ 
hurried to and fro through the courtyard, literally, 'distracted* aboD-** 
much serving.' 

' See iety, Nenbebr. Wiirterb. ad voc. 
» Martha occora, however, also as a 

male name (in the AiamaJp]. f IIuSkV 

.■n..™,.L«™r(-^).oc«.f .fJJ.^„ 


Her yooDger sieter, also, would do Him all highest honour ; bat, 
not as Martha. Her homage consisted in forgetting all else bat 
Him, Who spake as none had ever done. As traest courtesy or affec- 
tion consists, not in its demonstrations, but in being so absorbed in 
the object of it as to forget its demoDstration, so with Mary in the 
Presence of Christ. And then a new Light, another Day, had risen 
upon her ; a fresh life had sprung up within her soul : ' She sat at 
tie Lord's Feet,' and heard His Word.' We dare not inquire, and 
yet we well know, of what it would be. And so, time after time — 
perhaps, hour after hour — as Martha passed on her busy way, she still 
sat listening and living. At last, the sister who, in her impatience, 
could not think that a woman could, in such manner, fulfil her duty, 
or show forth her reUgions profiting, broke in with what sounds like 
a qneralons complaint: ' Lord, dost Thou not care. that my sister did 
leave me to aerve alone ? ' Maiy had served with her, but she had 
now left her to do the work alone. Would the Master bid her 
resume her neglected work? But, with tone of gentle reproof and 
admonition, the affectionateness of which appeared even in the 
repetition of her name, Martha, Martha — as, similarly, on a later 
occasion, Simon, Simon — did He teach her in words which, however 
simple in their primary meaning, are so full, that they have ever since 
home the most many-sided application : ' Thou art careful and anzions 
about many things : but one thing is needful ; ' and Mary hath 
«hos^i that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.' 

It waB, as we imagine, perhaps the first day of, or else the pre- 
fuation for, the Feast. More than that one day did Jesus tarry in 
the home of Bethany. Whether Lazarus came then to see Him — 
ind, still more, what both Martha and Mary learned, either then, or 
"iIlCTTards, we reverently forbear to search into. Suffice it, that 
though the natural disposition of the sisters remained what it had 
*>e«n, yet henceforth, * Jesus loved Martha and her sister.' 

i. ' This, instead of ' Jesus,' is the read- reading : ' bat few things are needful, or 
"% non generallj leceived as correct. one ' — meaning, not mach preparation, 
I ^** would be diiposed to adopt the indeed, only one dish is ni 


(St. John vii. 11-S6.) 

It was Choi ka Moed — as the non-sacred part of the festive week— 
the half-bolj days were called.' Jemsalem, the City of Solemnities, 
the City of Palaces, the City of beauty and glory — wore quite an- 
other than ita usual aspect ; other, even, than when its streets were 
thronged by festive pilgrims during the Passover-week, or at Pente- 
cost. For this was pre-eminently the Feaat fra foreign pilgrinu, 
coming from the ferthest distance, whose Temple-contributions were 
then received and counted.* Despite the strange costumes of 
Media, Alrabia, Persia, or India, and even further ; or the Westen 
speech and bearing of the pilgrims from Italy, Spain, the modem 
Crimea, and the banks of the Danube, if not from yet more strange 
and barbarous lands, it would not be difficult to recognise the lineB* 
ments of the Jew, nor to perceive that to change one's clime was not 
to change one's mind. As the Jemsalemite would look with prood 
self-consciousness, not unmingled with kindly patronage, on the 
swarthy strangers, yet fellow-countrymen, or the eager-eyed Galilea'> 
curiously stare after them, the pilgrims would, in turn, gaze iritt 
mingled awe and wonderment on the novel scene. Here was tb® 
realisation of their fondest dreams ever since childhood, the boix^ 
and spring of thefr holiest thoughts and best hopes — that wbid' 
gave inward victory to the vanquished, and converted pereecutio*' 
into anticipated triumph. 

They could come at this season of the year — not during ti** 
winter for the Passover, nor yet quite so readily in summer's he* 
for Pentecost. But now, in the delicious cool of early autumn, whe*' 
all harvest-operations, the gathering in of luscious fruit and th-^ 
vintage were past, and the first streaks of gold were tinting th.^ 
foliage, strangers from afer ofiF, and countrymen from Judsea, Pene»# 
and Galilee, would mingle in the streets of Jerusalem, under th^ 

> Also Clu)U> ihel Meed and Moed KaUm. ' See ob. lii. of thii Book. 


ever-present shadow of that glorious Sanctuary of marble, cedarwood, chap, 

suad gold, up there on high Moriah, symbol of the infinitely more vi 

gloiious overshadowing Presence of Him, Who was the Holy One in ' ' ' 

the midst of Israel. How all day long, even till the stars lit up the 

deep blue canopy over head, the smoke of the burning, smouldering 

saorifices rose in slowly-widening column, and hung between ihe 

Hount of Olives and Zion; how the chant of Levites, and the 

solemn responses of the UaUd were borne on the breeze, or the 

i^I^^ blast of the Priests' silver trumpets seemed to waken the 

Jclaoes far away ! And then, at night, how all these vast Temple- 

)cii1dings stood out, illuminated by the great Candelabras that 

)i3:med in the Court of the Women, and by the glare of torches, 

rlxcn strange sound of mystic hymns and dances came floating over 

h.^ intervening darkness ! Truly, well might Israel designate the 

r^sast of Tabernacles as * the Feast ' {kaChag\ and the Jewish his- 

oxiaa describe it as * the holiest and greatest.'* ' ^riii'JT^' 

Early on the 14th Tishri (corresponding to our September or 

fly October), all the festive pilgrims had arrived. Then it was, 

ideed, a scene of bustle and activity. Hospitality had to be sought 

a^ad found ; guests to be welcomed and entertained ; all things 

required for the feast to be got ready. Above all, booths must be 

^^'ected everywhere — in court and on housetop, in street and square, 

w the lodgment and entertainment of that vast multitude ; leafy 

dwellings everywhere, to remind of the wildemess-joumey, and now 

^ the goodly land. Only that fierce castle, Antonia, which frowned 

^Dove the Temple, was undecked by the festive spring into which 

^te land had burst. To the Jew it must have been a hateful sight, 

^t castle, which guarded and dominated his own City and Temple 

"^hateful sight and sounds, that Eoman garrison, with its foreign, 

heathen, ribald speech and manners. Yet, for all this, Israel could 

not read on the lowering sky the signs of the times, nor yet knew 

^e day of their merciful visitation. And this, although of all 

festivals, that of Tabernacles should have most clearly pointed them 

te the future. 

Indeed, the whole symbolism of the Feast, beginning with the 

^^pleted harvest, for which it was a thanksgiving, pointed to the 

'^^^^nre. The Rabbis themselves admitted this. The strange number 

^ sacrificial bullocks — seventy in all — they regarded as referring to 

^e seventy nations ' of heathendom.^ The ceremony of the out- »» succ m 6 ; 

•^ "^ Pe«ikta,ed. 

, Buber, p. 

. "w a fuU description of the Feast of Tabernacles in the days of Christ, I must it *'.»J^o*l* 
'^ to • The Temple and its Services.' ^^^^ ^ * 


BOOK pouring of water, which was considered of such vital importance as 

IV to give to the whole festival the name of 'House of Outpouring,'^ 

• saccT.i was symbolical of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.* As the bief 
Mer.suoc. jjght of the great Temple-illumination closed, there was solemn 

testimony made before Jehovah against heathenism. It must have 
been a stirring scene, when from out the mass of Levites, with their 
musical instruments, who crowded the fifteen steps that led firwn 
the Court of Israel to that of the Women, stepped two priests with 
their silver trumpets. As the first cockcrowing intimated the dawn 
of mom, they blew a threefold blast ; another on the tenth step, 
and yet another threefold blast as they entered the Court of the 
Women. And, still sounding their trumpets, they marched through 
the Court of the Women to the Beautiftd Gate. Here, turning 
round and facing westwards to the Holy Place, they repeated : * OuF 
fathers, who were in this place, they turned their backs on the 
Sanctuary of Jehovah, and their feces eastward, for they worshipped 
eastward, the sun; but we, our eyes are towards Jehovah.* *We 

• BnocT.4 are Jehovah's — our eyes are towards Jehovah.'**' Nay, the whole rf 

this nights and morning-scene was symbolical : the Temple-illumi- 
nation, of the light which was to shine from out the Temple into the 
dark night of heathendom; then, at the first dawn of. mom the 
blast of the priests' silver trumpets, of the army of God, as it ad- 
vanced, with festive trumpet-sound and call, to awaken the sleepei8> 
marching on to quite the utmost bounds of the Sanctuary, to the 
Beautiful Gate, which opened upon the Court of the Gentiles — and, 
then again, facing round to utter solemn protest against heathenisnif 
and make solemn confession of Jehovah ! 

But Jesus did not appear in the Temple during the first tW 
festive days. The pilgrims from all parts of the country — ^perhap^^ 
they from abroad also — had expected Him there, for everyone wonl^ 
now speak of Him — * not openly,' in Jerusalem, for they were afiai^ 
of their rulers. It was hardly safe to speak of Him without reservCi^ 
But they sought Him, and inquired after Him — and they did speat 
of Him, though there was only a murmuring — a low, confused dia* 
cussion of the pro and con in this great controversy among the 
* multitudes,'* or festive bands from various parts. Some said: He 
is a good man, while others declared that He only led astray the 
common, ignorant populace. And now, all at once, in Chcl hk 

1 This second form is according to R. place in St. John, and once in 8t. Maik 
Jehndah's tradition. (vi. 33), but sixteen times in St. Luke, tod 

* In the plural it occurs only in this still more frequently in St. Matthew. 


» AotB T. 12 


Moed^ Jesus Himself appeared in the Temple, and taught. We chap. 
know that, on a later occasion,* He walked and taught in 'Solo- vi 
moOiS Porch,' and, from the circumstance that the early disciples .st.Johnx. 
made this their conmion meeting-place,^ we may draw the infe- 
rence that it was here the people now found Him. Although neither 
Josephus nor the Mishnah mention this ' Porch ' by name,^ we have 
every reason for believing that it was the eastern colonnade, which 
abutted against the Mount of Olives and faced ' the Beautiful Gate,' 
that formed the principal entrance into the * Court of the Women,' 
and so into the Sanctuary. For, all along the inside of the great 
wall which formed the Temple-enclosure ran a double colonnade — 
each column a monolith of white marble, 25 cubits high, covered 
with cedar-beams. That on the south side (leading from the western 
entrance to Solomon's Porch), known as the * Royal Porch,' was a 
threefold colonnade, consisting of four rows of columns, each 
27 cubits high, and surmounted by Corinthian capitals. We infer 
that the eastern was * Solomon's Porch,' from the circumstance that 
it was the only relic left of Solomon's Temple.*^ These colonnades, «jw. Ant. 
which, from their ample space, formed alike places for quiet walk and xx! s.V ' 
for larger gatherings, had benches in them — and, from the liberty of 
speaking and teaching in Israel, Jesus might here address the people 
in the very tsjce of His enemies. 

We know not what was the subject of Christ's teaching on this 
occasion. But the effect on the people was one of general astonish- 
ment. They knew what common unlettered Galilean tradesmen 
i^ere — ^but ihiSj whence came it ? * How does this one know litera- 
ture (letters, learning),^* never having learned ? ' To the Jews there a comp. 
only one kind of learning — ^that of Theology ; and only one road 24 
itr— the Schools of the Rabbis. Their major was true, but their 
nnrhinoT &lse — and Jesus hastened to correct it. He had, indeed, 
* learned,' but in a School quite other from those which alone they 
r-ecognised. Yet, on their own showing, it claimed the most absolute 
submission. Among the Jews a Rabbi's teaching derived authority 
^m the fiwjt of its accordance with tradition — that it accurately 
represented what had been received from a previous great teacher, 
^ 80 on upwards to Moses, and to God Himself. On this ground 
y^^^ claimed the highest authority. His doctrine was not His own 
^^^^Dtion — ^it was the teaching of Him that sent Him. The doctrine 

, ,^Qe above, p. 14S. its Johannine authorahip, just as the men- 

jg^fiiifli, as showing sach local know- tion of that Porch in the Book of Acts 

j^^ on the part of the Fourth Gospel, points to a Jemsalem source of informa- 

^ be taken as additional evidence of tion. 


was God-received, and Christ was sent direct from God to bring it. 
He was God's messenger of it to them. Of this twofold claim there 
was also twofold evidence. Did He aasert that what He taught was 
God-received ? Let trial be made of it. Everyone who felt drawn 
in his soul towards God ; each one who really ' willeth to do His 
Will,' would know ' concerning this teaching, whether it is of God,' 
or whether it was of man.' It was this felt, though unrealised 
influence which had drawn all men after Him, so that they hung on 
His lips. It was this which, in the hour of greatest temptation asd 
mental difficulty, had led Peter, in name of the others, to end tJie 
sore inner contest by laying hold on this faet : ' To whom shall we 
go ? Thou hast the words of eternal life — and we liave believed anA 
know, that Thou art the Holy One of God.'" Marking, as we pass, 
that this inward connection between that teaching and learning aix<l 
the present occasion, may be the deeper reason why, in the Gos[»«I 
by St. John, the one narrative is immediately followed by the oth^tr, 
we pause to say, how real it hath proved in all ages and to all stagfcs 
of Christian learning — that the heart makes the truly God-tauglit 
('pectus facit Theologmn'), and that inward, true aspiration aPt«r 
the Divine prepares the eye to behold the Divine Reality in the 
Christ. But, if it be so, is there not evidence here, that He is tlie 
God-sent — that He is a real, true Ambassador of tJod? If Jesus' 
teaching meets and satisfies our mora! nature, if it leads up to G<Ki, 
is He not the Christ ? 

And this brings us to the second claim which Christ made, tb^t 
of being sent by God, There is yet another logical link in BJ* 
reasoning. He had said: 'He shall know of the teaching, wheth^f 
it be of God, or whether I speak from Myself.' From Myself ? Vt^i 
there is this other test of it : ' Who speaketh from himself, seeke*>*' 
his own glory ' — there can be no doubt or question of this, but dff '■ 
seek My own glory ?— ' but He 'WTio seeketh the glory of Him Wt*" 
sent Him, He is true [a faithful messenger], and unrighteousness :^ 
not in Him,' Thus did Christ appeal and prove it : My doctrine ^^ 
of God, and I am sent of God ! 

Sent of God, no nnrighteousness in Him I And yet at that yer^ 
moment there hung over Him the charge of defiance of the Law (T* 
Moses, nay, of that of God, in an open breach of the Sabbath-com" 
mandment — there, in that very City, the last time He had been if 
Jerusalem ; for which, as well as for His Divine Claims, the Jews were 

' The panage quoted b; WMirott from Ab. ii. i does not seem t« be panUel. 


«ven then ^ seeking to kill Him.' * And this forms the transition to 

^frhat msj be called the second part of Christ's address. If, in the 

first part, the Jewish form of ratiocination was already apparent, it .Tt 

seems almost impossible for any one acquainted with those forms to ^' ^' 

understand how it can be overlooked in what follows.' It is exactly 

tbe mode in which a Jew would argue with Jews, only the substance 

of the reasoning is to all times and people. Christ is defending 

Simself against a charge which naturally came up, when He claimed 

tbat His Teaching was of God and Himself Grod's real and fedthful 

IdC^senger. In His reply the two threads of the former argument 

taken up. Doing is the condition of knowledge — and a messenger 

been sent from God ! Admittedly, Moses was such, and yet 

t^arj one of them was breaking the Law which he had given them ; 

'9 were they not seeking to kill Him without right or justice ? 

I, put in the form of a double question, represents a peculiarly 

J^^gh mode of argumentation, behind which lay the terrible truth, 

tl^at those, whose hearts were so little longing to do the Will of God, 

xi.ot only must remain ignorant of His Teaching as that of God, but 

l^«l also rejected that of Moses. 

A general disclaimer, a cry * Thou hast a demon ' (art possessed), 

* wio seeks to kill Thee ? ' here broke in upon the Speaker. But 

He would not be interrupted, and continued : * One work I did, and 

^ you wonder on account of it '^ — referring to His healing on the 

^bath, and their utter inability to understand His conduct. Well, 

^en, Moses was a messenger of God, and I am sent of God. Moses 

8*ve the law of circumcision — not, indeed, that it was of his 

^^thority, but had long before been God-given — and, to observe this 

^^} no one hesitated to break the Sabbath,^ since, according to 

rabbinic principle, a positive ordinance superseded a negative. And 

yet, when Christ, as sent from God, made a man every whit whole on 

^^^ Sabbath (* made a whole man sound '), they were angry with 

'^. Every argument which might have been urged in favour of 

^^ postponement of Christ's healing to a week-day, would equally 

*PPly to that of circumcision; while every reason that could be 

lienrd this as almost overwhelm- 

^^yidence against the theory of an 

^''^cian authorship of the Fourth Gospel. 

^ the double question in ver. 19 is 

% ligfnificant. 

J^ words * on account of it/ rendered 

^ A.V. * therefore,* and placed in ver. 

^7 form the close of ver. 21. At 

i«te, they cannot be taken in the 

sense of ' therefore.' 

* This was a well-recognised Rabbinic 
principle. Ck>mp. for example Shabb. 
132 a, where the argument runs that, if 
circumcision, which applies to one of the 
24S members, of which, according to the 
Babbis, the human body consists^ super- 
seded the Sabbath, how much more the 
preservation of the whole body. 


BOOK urged in favour of Sabbath-circumcisioD, would tell an hundredfold 
IV in favour of Christ. Oh, then, let them not judge after the meie 
' outward appearance, bat 'judge the right judgment.' And, indeed* 
had it not been to convince them of the extemaliem of their viewi, 
that Jeaus had on that Sabbath opened the great controversy between 
the letter that killeth and the spirit that maketh alive, when He di- 
rected the impotent man to carry home the bed on which he had lain? 
If any doubt could obtain, how truly Jesus had gauged the ezifib* 
ing state of things, when He contrasted heart-willingneas to do tie 
Will of God, as the necessary preparation for the reception of Hit 
God-sent Teaching, with their murderous designs, springing from bliitd 
literalism and ignorance of the spirit of their Law, the reported K- 
marks of aome Jerusalemites in the crowd would suffice to convince 
UH. The fact that He, Whom they sought to kill, waa suffered to 
speak openly, seemed to them incomprehensible. Could it be tint 
the authorities were shaken in their former ideas about Him, and 
now regarded Him as the Messiah? But it could not be.' It wai> 
settled popular belief, and, in a sense, not quite unfounded, that tlte 
appearance of the Messiah would be sudden and unexpected. He 
might be there, and not be known ; or He might come, and be again 
■Oomp. •iBo hidden for a time.*' As they put it, when Messiah came, no one 
lodt. OD ' would know whence He was ; but they all knew ' whence this One 
was. And with this rough and ready argument of a coarse realism, 
they, like so many among us, settled off-hand and once for aU the 
great question. But Jesus could not, even for the sake of His po« 
weak disciples, let it rest there. ' Therefore ' He lifted up His voitA* 
that it reached the dispersing, receding multitude. Yes, they thon^^ 
they knew both Him and whence He came. It would have been K>' 
had He come from Himself. But He had been sent, and He tM' 
sent Him * was real ; ' * it was a real Mission, and Him, Who ba* 
thus sent the Christ, they knew not. And so, with a reaffirmation ()» 

' Id the original : 'Can it be 7' Been whea in juxtaposition with iuM^ 

• See Book H.. ch. v., and App«ndJJi (for example, 1 John ii. 8). But i» H^ 
IX. Book of limelatumt when it oomii to- 

■ 'Cried.' times (iii. 7, U ; Ti, 10; xv. 3; rri. Ti 

• The word iAijAicifi has not an exact xii. 2, 9. 11; iii.6; nii. 6), it ia* smdur 
Engliah equivalent, scarcely a German mtaning, and can acaroelj bo dil^ 
one (KolirhafiiffT). It is a f avonrite word guished from out Eogliah 'tme.' It to 
of St. John's, who nses it eight times in ased. in the sams sensa M In 8t. Jdbtil 
hia Oospel, or, if the Revised reading viii. Qospeland Epistle, in St.Lnlcexii. 11, bt 
16 be adopted, nine timet (i. 9 ; iv. 23, 1 Tbess. i. » ; and three times in &» 
S7;Ti. 32;TiI. S8; viii. 16 I; it. 1; irii. Epistle to the Hebrews (viii. 3 ; ix.Hi I. 
3 ; six. 36) ; and foar times in bis First 22). We msf , therefore, regaid it ■■ »- 
Epistle (ii. B, and three times in ch. v. 20). word to which a Qrecian, not m Jndnn 
Its .Tohannine meaning is perhaps best meaning attaches. Id out vi«w it nftn^ 


His twofold cl^m, His DiBcourae closed.* But they had ttoderstood CE 
TTia allusions, and in their anger would fain have laid hands on Him, ^ 
but His hour had not come. Yet others were deeply stirred to Mth. ^~^ 
Aa they parted they spoke of it among themselves, and the sum of ^it- « 
it all was : ' The Christ, when He cometh, will He do more miracles 
(signs) than this One did ? ' 

So ended the first teaching of that day in the Temple. And as 

the people dispersed, the leaders of the Pharisees — who, no doubt 

avare of the presence of Christ in the Temple, yet unwilling to be 

in the nmnber of His hearers, had watched the effect of His Teaching 

—overheard the low, furtive, half-outspoken remarks (' the murmiu'- 

ing ') of the people about Him. Presently they conferred with the 

beads of the priesthood and the chief Temple-K>iGcialB.' Although 

there was neither meeting, nor decree of the Sanhedrin about it, nor, 

indeed, could be,* orders were given to the Temple-guard on the first 

poBuble occasion to seize Him. Jesus was aware of it, and as, either 

on this or another day. He was moving in the Temple, watched by 

the vpea of the rulers and followed by a mingled crowd of disciples 

and enemies, deep sadness in view of the end filled His heart. 

* Jems Uierefore said ' — no doubt to His disciples, though in the 

hearing of all — ' yet a little while am I with you, then I go away ' 

to Him that sent Me. Ye shall seek Me, and not find Me ; and 

*iere I am, thither ye cannot come.' Mournful words, these, which 

wte only too soon to become true. But those who heard them 

utnially failed to comprehend their meaning. Was He about to 

kftfe Palestine, and go to the Diaspora of the Greeks, among the 

%iaaed who lived in heathen lands, to teach the Greeks ? Or 

i4iat could be His meaning? But we, who hear it across these cen- 

^<iiiet,feel as if their question, like the suggestion of the High-Priest 

"tihter period, nay, like so many suggestions of men, had been, all 

"■WBttdously, prophetic of the future. 

|aAelineuthereBl,aiidthe real as that Priesthood, see 'The Temple acid Its Ser- 
, nicfcbM become ontwacdlytnie. Idonot Tioes,' cb. i»,, especiallj pp. 76-77. 

, I nnder- ' Only those unacquainted with the 

l^l^ldotiot agree with Cresier (Bib\. j adicial piocednre of the Sanhedrin ooold 

^tgLLei^Eiigl.a].p.85}.tbat'iAi)0it^T imagine that there had heen a regular 

~'~' ' 'M JUifV^i as form lo contents meeting and decree of that tribunal. 

The distinction between That wonld have required a formal 

•■ iiiiwn and the Grecian meaning is BCCttsation, witnesses, examination, lie. 
M Mlj heme out bj the Book of Rev- ■ Canon Weiteett marks, that the word 

lUn (which oses it is the Jadteou hereDsed(AriTtt)indicatesspe»oaal act, 

■■■■XbDtbj Boclni. zUi. 2, 11. In the while another word (woptio/uu) marks 

j|PLIt rtaiid* fbr not fewer than twelve a purpose or mitaioD, and yet a third 

' te Oa baadt and chief offidals of the 

wotd (twipxauat) expresMa simple sepaia 



'in the last, IBB QBEAT DAT OF THE FEAST. 

(St. John vii. 37— 

i. 11.) 

It was * the last, the great da; of the Feast,' and Jesus was once 
more in the Temple. We can scarcely doubt that it was the con- 
cludiug day of the Feast, and not, as most modem writers suppose, 
its Octave, which, in Rabbinic language, was regarded as ' a fea- 
tival by itself.' ' But such solemn interest attaches to the Feast, 
and this occurrence on its last day, that we must try to realise the 
scene. We have here the only Old Testament type yet unfulfilled; 
the only Jewish festival which has no counterpart in the cycle of tlie 
Chriatian year,^ just because it ]>oiuts forward to that great, yet on- 
fulUlled hope of the Church : the ingathering of Earth's nations to 
the Christ. 

The celebration of the Feast corresponded to its great meaDin^' 
Not only did all the priestly families minister during that week, bo-"*' 
it has been calculated that not fewer than 446 Priests, with, of coun^i 
a corresponding number of Levites, were required for its sacrifici^fci 
worship. In general, the services were the same every day, exccE*''* 
that the number of bullocks offered decreased daily fi'om thirteen c** 
the first, to seven on the seventh day. Only during the first twOi 
and on the last festive day (as also on the Octave of the Feast), »^** 
strict Sabbatic rest enjoined. On the intervening half-holydays (Ch^ 
kaMoed), although no new labour was to be undertaken, unless in tl** 
public service, the ordinary and necessary avocations of the hoU** 
and of life were carried on, and especially all done that was reqxur^ 

' Hence tha benodiction said at the 
beginning of every Feast is cot only said 
on tlie flr«c of that of Taberaacles, but 
also on the oeiarf of it (Sacc IS a). 
The sacriflces for that occasion were quite 
different from those for ' Tabemaclee ; ' 
the ' booths ' were removed ; the pecDlIar 
rites of the Foaat of TabeToaiclea, and espe- 

cially tho ceremony of ' water-poniing,'*'? 
longer observed. Thislsdistinct^stoM^ 
in Socc. V. 1, and the diverging cjaai* 
of R. Jehudah on this and another point 
is formally rejected in To«. Snoo. iiL 8. 

' Bishop Ilaneberg speaks of the aanl- 
versaries of the Martyrs as part-fnlfilmat 
of the typical meaning of that Feut 


the festive season. But * the last, the Great Day of the Feast/ chap. 
marked by special observances. vu 

Let us suppose ourselves in the number of worshippers, who on * 
^Iie last, the Great Day of the Feast,' are leaving their * booths ' at 
Ei^^break to take part in the service. The pilgrims are all in festive 
CTray. In his right hand each carries what is called the LvXav,^ 
•-Inich, although properly meaning * a branch,' or * palm-branch,' con- 
Lfirted of a myrtle and willow-branch tied together with a palm-branch 
^'C^ween them. This was supposed to be in fulfilment of the com- Lev. xxui. 40. * The finiit (A. V. * boughs ') of the goodly trees,' 
i.^ntioned in the same verse of Scripture, was supposed to be the 
ETthrog, the so-called Paradise-apple (according to Ber. R. 16, the 
r^mit of the forbidden tree), a species of citron.* This jEthrog each • Targ. on- 
roTshipper carries in his left hand. It is scarcely necessary to add, pseodwoa. 
Ixat this interpretation of Lev. xxiii. 40 was given by the Babbis ; ^ Sv. ISi?" 
p^^baps more interesting to know, that this was one of the points in Ant. i^. is. 
oomtraversy between the Pharisees and Sadducees. b v»- r so 

Thus armed with Lulav in their right, and jEthrog in their left ^^j^^^* 
^MUMlg, the festive multitude would divide into three bands. Some p*^« 
would remain in the Temple to attend the preparation of the 
Mondng Sacrifice. Another band would go in procession * below 
Jerusalem ' *^ to a place called Moza, the * Kolonia ' of the Jerusalem « sacc. iv 5 
'Wmud,* not without reason regarded as the Emmaus of the Eesur- f Jer. suoo. 
^^ion-Evening.* At Moza they cut down willow-branches, with 
^Mch, amidst the blasts of the Priests' trumpets, they adorned the 
*ltar, forming a leafy canopy around it. Yet a third company were 
^•^dag part in a still more interesting service. To the sound of 
Di^c a procession started from the Temple. It followed a Priest 
who bore a golden pitcher, capable of holding three log? On it 
^oved, probably, through Ophel, which recent investigations have 
shown to have been covered with buildings to the very verge of 
Siloom, down the edge of the Tyropoeon Valley, where it merges 
iato that of the Kedron. To this day terraces mark where the 
Prtens, watered by the living spring, extended from the King's Gar- 
dens by the spring Rogel down to the entrance into the Tyropoeon. 
Here was the so-called * Foimtain-Gate,' and still within the City- 

' Also LuUvoa and LuUiva, 26), of which Emmaus is perhaps the 

' Th€TO can, indeed, be little question Greek form. As for the identity of 

^[J^ oorroctness of this identification. ' Colonia ' and Emmaos, see Jot, Jew. War 

^wiUowB would be cut at the spring vii. 6. 6; comp. P. E. F. Report, July 1881 
!^ is there, and close by is the vUlage * Bather more than two pints, 
^t Himg^ evidently Moza (Josh, zviii. 


BOOK ■wall * the Pool of Siloam,' the overflow of which fed a lower pooL 

IV As already stated, it was at the merging of the TyropceOD into die 

' Kedron Valley, in the south-eastern angle of Jerusalem. The Pod 

of Siloam was fed by the living spring farther up in the nartowot 

part of the Kedron Valley, which presently bears the name of 'tlie 

Virgin's Fountain,' but represents the ancient En-Rogel and Gilun. 

Indeed, the very canal which led from the one to the other, with the 

inscription of the workmen upon it, has been excavated. Thoagb 

chiefly of historical interest, a sentence may be added. The Pool of 

•com»- Siloam is the same as 'the King's Pool ' of Neh. ii. 14.* It na 

made by King Hezekiah, in order both to divert from a besieging 

army the spring of Crihon, which could not be brought within &e 

•sCTiron. City-wall, and yet to bring its waters within the City." Tbii 

tot^ix. explains the origin of the name SUoaTn, 'sent' — a conduit ■■-« 

• st John * Siloab,' as Josephus calls it. Lastly, we remember that it was don 
•^ ' in the valley at G-ihon (or En-Kogel), that Solomon was proclaimed,* 
11,18 ' while the opposite faction held revel, and would have mode Adw- 

ijah king, on the cliff Zoheloth (the modem ZahweiUh) right over 

• 1 KiDgi L » against it, not a hundred yards distant,' where they must, of conrse, 

have distinctly heard the sound of the trumpets and the shouts d 

• ter. ft the people as Solomon was proclaimed king.' 

But to return. When the Temple-procession had reached ^^ 
Pool of Siloam, the Priest filled his golden pitcher irom its wat«»>* 
Then they went back to the Temple, bo timing it, that they shonW 
arrive just as they were laying the pieces of the sacrifice on the gre«t 
■ Tw. Bme. Altar of Bumt-offering,* towards the close of the ordinary Morning 
Sacrifice service. A threefold blast of the Priests' trumpets welcomed 
the arrival of the Priest, as he entered through the 'Water-gate,'* 
which obtained its name from this ceremony, and passed straight 
into the Court of the Priests. Here he was joined by another Priest* 
who carried the wine for the drink-offering. The two Priests agcended 
' the rise ' of the altar, and turned to the left. There were tw» 
silver funnels here, with narrow openings, leading down to the base <f 
the altar. Into that at the east, which was somewhat wider, the 
wine was poured, and, at the same time, the water into the westen 
and narrower opening, the people shouting to the Priest to raise his 
hand, so as to make sure that he poured the water into the funnel. 

' Cnrioualy, in that passage the spring had been provided the day befon. 

ol the river ia designated bjr the word ' One of the gates that opened from 

Mata. ' the Terrace ' on the eonth aide of Uw 

' Except on a Sabbath, and on the first Temple. 
day of the Feast. On theae occssiotia it 


or, although it was held, that the water-pouring was an ordi- chap. 
ince instituted by Moses, * a Halachah of Moses from Sinai,' » this vn 
143 another of the points disputed by the Sadducees.^ And, indeed, •jer.snoo. 
give practical effect to their views, the High-Priest Alexander IlV ^^^ 
Lnnfleus had on one occasion poured the water on the ground, when 

2 uras nearly murdered, and in the riot, that ensued, six thousand 
arsons were killed in the Temple.^ «»suoc1t.9; 

Inunediately after * the pouring of water,' the great * Hallel,' con- xiii is. s 
sting of Psalms cxiii. to cxviii. (inclusive), was chanted antiphon- 
[y, or rather, with responses, to the accompaniment of the flute. 

3 the Levitts intoned the first line of each Psalm, the people 
peated it ; while to each of the other lines they responded by 
cMelv, Jdh (* Praise ye the Lord '). But in Psalm cxviii. the people 
>t only repeated the first line, * give thanks to the Lord,' but ^so 

lese, * O then, work now salvation, Jehovah,' ^ * Lord, send now * ps. cxriu. 
rosperity ; * * and again, at the close of the Psalm, * give thanks to d yer. 85 
tie Liord.* As they repeated these lines, they shook towards the 
liar the Lulav which they held in their hands — as if with this 
oken of the past to express the reality and cause of their praise, and 
x> remind God of His promises. It is this moment which should be 
•biefly kept in view. 

The festive morning-service was followed by the offering of the 
special sacrifices for the day, with their drink-offerings, and by the 
pBalni for the day, which, on ' the last, the Great Day of the Feast,' 
-was Psalm Ixxxii. from verse 5.® * The Psalm was, of course, chanted, • succ. w a ; 

f. Maimonides, 

as always, to instrumental accompaniment, and at the end of each of ^jd hachw. 

its three sections the Priests blew a threefold blast, while the people »mo6. x. I'l 

bowed down in worship. In further symbolism of this Feast, as 

pointing to the ingathering of the heathen nations, the public services 

closed with a procession round the Altar by the Priests, who chanted 

'0 thcD, work now salvation, Jehovah ! Jehovah, send now pro- 

^rity.'' But on Hhe last, the Great Day of the Feast,' this proces- f pb-cxtiii. 

8ion of Priests made the circuit of the altar, not only once, but seven 

^nies, as if they were again compassing, but now with prayer, the 

Gentile Jericho which barred their possession of the promised land. 

Hence the seventh or last day of the Feast was also called that of 

*ttie Great Hosannah.' As the people left the Temple, they saluted 

^e altar with words of thanks,* and on the last day of the Feast « saoc iv. s 

On the other hand, R. Akiba main- days of the Feast, and a detailed descrip- 

*?|^that the * water-pouring ' was pre- tion of the Feast itself, see * The Temple 

•^^ in the written Law. and its Services,* ch. xiv. 

^or the PsEilms chanted on the other 


i» a. •. 8 


BOOK they shook oflF the leaves on the willow-branches round the altar,. 
IV and beat their palm-branches to pieces/ On the same afternoon tlu 
• o-fciana * booths ' were dismantled, and the Feast ended.^ 

We can have little difficulty in determining at what part of iht 
services of * the last, the Great Day of the Feast,' Jesus stood ancza 
cried, * If any one thirst, let him come unto Me and drink ! ' £"• 
must have been with special reference to the ceremony of the ot±r— 
pouring of the water, which, as we have seen, was considered th.^ 
central part of the service.^ Moreover, all would understand th&t; 
His words must refer to the Holy Spirit, since the rite was univer- 
sally regaaxled as symbolical of His outpouring. The forthpouringf 
of the water was immediately followed by the chanting of thue 
HaUel, But after that there must have been a short pause to 
prepare for the festive sacrifices (the MvsapK). It was then, 
immediately after the symbolic rite of water-pouring, immediately 
after the people had responded by repeating those lines from Psalm 
cxviii. — given thanks, and prayed that Jehovah would send salvation 
and prosperity, and had shaken their Lulav towards the altar, thus 
praising ' with heart, and mouth, and hands,' and then silence haA 
fallen upon them — that there rose, so loud as to be heard throughoirt 
the Temple, the Voice of Jesus. He interrupted not the service*^ 
for they had for the moment ceased : He interpreted, and He fulfilled 

Whether we realise it in connection with the deeply-stirring 
rites just concluded, and the song of praise that had scarcely diec^ 
out of the air ; or think of it as a vast step in advance in the histoij^ 
of Christ's Manifestation, the scene is equally wondrous. But yester-*' 
day they had been divided about Him, and the authorities had give* 
directions to take Him ; to-day He is not only in the Temple, buV 
at the close of the most solemn rites of the Feast, asserting, withiii^ 
the hearing of all. His claim to be regarded as the fulfilment of all^ 
and the true Messiah ! And yet there is neither harshness of com* 
mand nor violence of threat in His proclamation. It is the King, 
meek, gentle, and loving ; the Messiah, Who will not break the 
bruised reed. Who will not lift up His Voice in tone of anger, but 
speak in accents of loving, condescending compassion. Who now 
bids, whosoever thirsteth, come unto Him and drink. And so the 
words have to all time remained the call of Christ to all that thirsty 

* I am BurpriBed to find that Canon pouring' had taken place on the daj 
Wettoott (ad loo.) regards it as a doubt- when our Lord so pointed to the fol* 
f al question whether or not the ' water- filment of its sjnnbolical meaning. 


Lence- or what-soever their Deed and longiDg of soul may be. But, 
we liBten to these words as originally spoken, we feel how they 
xrk that Christ's hour was indeed coming : the preparation past ; " 
e manifestation in the present, anmistakable, urgent, and loving ; 
cl the final conflict at hand. 

Of those who had heard Him, none but must have understood 

at, if the invitation were indeed real, and Christ the fulfilment of 

I, then the promise also had its deepest meaning, that he who 

lieved on Him wotdd not only receive the promised fulness of the 

•irit, but give it forth to the fertilising of the barren waste around. 

was, truly, the fulfilment of the Scripture-promise, not of one 

tt of all : that in Messianic times the Nam, * prophet,' literally the 

iller forth, viz., of the Divine, should not be one or another select 

dividual, but that He would pour out on all His handmaidens and 

i~vante of His Holy Spirit, and thus the moral wilderness of this 

»ild be changed into a fruitful garden. Indeed, this is expressly 

aj»d in the Targum which thus paraphrases Is. xliv. 3 : * Behold, 

t the waters are poured out on arid ground and spread over the dry 

*il, 80 will I give the Spirit of My Holiness on thy sons, and My 

leasing on thy children's children.' What was new to them was, 

xat all this was treasured up in the Christ, that out of His fulness 

len might receive, and grace for grace. And yet even this was not 

aite new. For, was it not the fulfilment of that old prophetic cry : 

C^ Spirit of the Lord Jehovah is upon Me : therefore has He 

Eessiabed (anointed) Me to preach good tidings unto the poor ' ? 

•o then, it was nothing new, only the happy fulfilment of the old, 

•■Hen He thus ' spake of the Holy Spirit, which they who believed 

'H Him should receive,' not then, but upon His Meaaianic exaltation. 

And so we scarcely wonder that many, on hearing Him, said, 

ttiongh not with that hear(H3onviction which would have led to 

sfili-nurender, that He was the Prophet promised of old, even the 

'■^'naty while others, by their side, regarding Him as a Galilean, the 

^of Joseph, raised the ignorant objection that He could not be the 

Metnab, since the latter must be of the seed of David and come 

""n Bethlehem. Nay, such was the anger of some against what 

^ regarded a dangerous seducer of the poor people, that they 

*wild fiin have laid violent hands on Him, But amidst all this, 

^ Drongest testimony to His Person and Mission remains to be 

•"'i It came, as so often, from a quarter whence it could least have 

^ expected. Those Temple-officers, whom the authorities had 

'"'"'Bbaoned to watch an opportunity for seizing Jesus, came back 

wl. u. m 


withont having done their behest, and that, when, manifestly, the 
scene in the Tenijile might have offered the desired groond for Hia 
impriEODmeut. To the question of the Pharisees, they conld olIj 
give this reply, which has ever since remained nnquestionable feet of 
history, admitted alike by friend and foe: ' Never man spake like 
this man." For, as all sijiritual longing and all upward tending, not 
only of men but even of systems, consciously or unconscioiisly tends 
towards Christ,* so can we measure and judge all systems by thiB, 
which no sober student of history wU! gainsay, that no man w 
system ever so spake. 

It was not this which the Pharisees now gainsaid, but rather tbe 
obvious, and, we may add, logical, inference from it. The scene 
which followed is so thoroughly Jewish, that it alone would suffice to 
prove the Jewish, and hence Johannine, authorship of the Fourtli 
Gospel. The harsh sneer; 'Are ye also led astray?' is saceeedA 
by pointing to the authority of the learned and great, who with ow 
accord were rejecting Jesus. 'But this people' — tJie country-pec^'e 
(jlm ha-<trez), the ignorant, unlettered rabble — ' are cursed.' Snfr— 
cient has been shown in previous parts of this book to explain slil^' 
the Pharisaic claim of authority and their almost unutterable contemptt^ 
of the unlettered. So far did the latter go, that it would refuse, no-'*^ 
only all family connection and friendly intercourse,* but even tit^^ 
* bread of charity, to the unlettered ; '^ nay, that, in theory at lent-* 
it would have regarded their murder as no sin,'* and even cut thBK^ 
off from the hope of the Kesurrection."' But is it not true, that,eT** 
in our days, this double sneer, rather than argnment, of the PhaiL-^ 
sees is the main reason of the disbeUef of so many : Which of th^ 
learned believe on Him? but the ignorant multitude are led b^ 
superstition to ruin. 

There was one standing among the Temple-authorities, whom a** 
uneasy conscience would not allow to remain quite silent. It wfc^ 
the Sanhedrist Nicodemus, still a night^^iisciple, even in bright***' 
noon-tide. He could not hold his peace, and yet he dared not Bpe«^^ 
for Christ. So he made compromise of both by taking the part of* 
and speaking as, a righteous, rigid Sanhedrist. ' Does our Law jndg^ 
(pronounce sentence upon) a man, except it first hear from himset* 
and know what he doeth ? ' From the Rabbinic point of view, n.^' 
sounder judicial saying could have been uttered. Yet such commoi*-"^ 

' WLpther or nut tit- last three wonls 

' For fuUer details the reader 

arc spurious is, so fur U9 the sen»e cif the 

wordu is conceraetl, matter of compani- 

61 a. 

tiTe indilFeretice. 


laces impose not on any one, nor even serve any good purpose. 
t helped not the caose of Jesus, and it disguised not the advocacy 
f Kicodemus. We know what was thought of Galilee in the 
labbinic world. * Art thon also of Galilee ? Search and see, for 
ttt of Galilee ariseth no prophet.' 

And so ended this incident, which, to all concerned, might have 
]een so fmitful of good. Once more Nicodemus was left alone, as 
every one who has dared and yet not dared for Christ is after all 
aach bootless compromises ; alone — with sore heart, stricken con- 
science, and a great longing.' 

' The reader will observe, that the 
imMiTe of the woman taken in adnlur;, 
utlu the previaos verae (St. John vii. 
E3-iiii, 11) have been left out in this 
Hiaory— althongh with great telnctance. 
B; Una it is not intended to characteriBe 
tut lection as ApoOTphal, nor Indeed to 
VMiaact ttaj opinion ai to the reality 
ol Mu nch occurrence. For, it contoiiu) 
Biwh "Meh we instiiictiTely feel to be 
^ tlM KMter, both in what Christ is 
r^teaoud aa saying and as doing. All 
t™ w itlnctantly feel bound to main- 
'•'"a.thit the narrative in its present 
™> iSd »*( exiat ia the Gospel of 
°t. Join, and, indeed, amid not have 
^ei For a summary ol the external 
^™Gti[» ag^nst the Johannine author- 
™P of the passage, I would refer to 
J™" Wettmtft Note, ad loo., in the 
'Striker's Commentary.' But there is 
*" 'Mftnai evidence, ftod, to my mind 
*f KBit, moet cogent, against ils authen- 
t™T-at any rate, in its present form. 
™iii fit* to last it is utterly nn-Jewish. 
""Mdingiy, unbiassed critics who are 
Kotnant either with Jewish legal pro- 
'»1«^ or with the habits and viewa 
°l Ox people at the time, would ft-c! 
oWipdio reject it, even if the external 
**~*)>ce had been as strong in its favoar 
J* " il (or its rejection. Canon FaTrar 
™i imfeed, devoted to the illustration of 
"UMnBlivesome of his most pictorial 
^P>- But, with all his ability and 
™JMnce, his references to Jewish law 
"nobMtvanoeB are not sncbas to satisfy 
^ '^Dirementa of criticism. To this 
P»ttil objection to their correctness I 
'"'f add my protest against the un- 
B"^"^ views which he presents of the 

moral state of Jewish society at the time. 
On the other band, from whatever point 
we view this narrative — the accaaere, the 
witnesses, the public eiamination, the 
bringing of the woman to Jesus, or the 
punishment claimed — it presents insuper- 
able difficulties. That a woman taken in 
the act of adultery should have been 
brought to Jeaus (and apparently without 
the witnesses to her crime) ; that such an 
utterly nn-Jewisb, as well as illeg^ pro- 
cedure should have beeo that of the 
■Scribes and Pharisees'; that such a 
breach of law, and of what Jud^m 
would regard as decency, should have 
been perpetrated to'tempt 'Him; or that 
the Scribes should have been so ignorant 
as to substitute stoning for strangulation, 
as the ponishment of adultery; lastly, 
that this scene should have been enacted 
in the Temple, prcseuts a veritable 
climax of impossibilities. I can only 
express my extreme surprise that Canon 
farrar should have suggested that the 
' Feast of Tabernacles had grown into 
a kind of vintage-festival, which would 
often degenerate into acts of license and 
immotality,' or that the lives of the 
religious leaders of Israel 'were often 
stained ' with such sins. The first state- 
ment is utterly ungrounded ; and as for 
the second, I do not recall a single 
instance in which a chaise of adultery is 
brought against a Rabbi o( that period. 
The quotations in Hrjip't Leben Jean 
(vol, V. p. 183), which Canon Dtrrar ad- 
duces, arc not to cases in point, however 
much, from the Christian point of view, 
we may reprobate the conduct of the 
Rabbis there mentioned. 





(St. John viii. 12-fi9.) 

BOOK The Btartling teachiDg od < the laet, the Great Day of the Feast,' n* 

IV not the only one delivered at that season. The impreBsion left 0» 

" the mind ie, that after silencing, as they thought, Nicodemus, tk» 

leaders of the Pharisees had dispersed.' The Addresses of Jentf 

which followed must, therefore, have been delivered, either later <i>- 

that day, or, what on every account seems more likely, chieSy, o*" 

all, on the next day,* which was the Octave of the Feast, when th^ 

Temple would be once more thronged by worshippers. 

^LMm On this occasion we find Chriflt, first in 'the Treasnry,'* oA then" in some unnamed part of the sacred building, in all prDtala." 
lity one of the ' Porches.' Greater freedom could be here enjoyedv 
since these * Porches,' which enclosed the Court of the Gentiles, did 
not fonn part of the Sanctuary in the stricter sense. Diacusooa' 
might take place, in which not, as in ' the Treasury,' only ' the Phaii-' 

vtT.u sees,'*" but the people generally, might propound questions, answo'-r 
or assent. Again, aa regards the requirements of the present nan*— 
tive, since the Porches opened upon the Court, the Jews might there 
pick up stones to cast at Him (which would have been impossible i** 
any part of the Sanctuary itself), while, lastly, Jesos might eanl^ 
pass out of the Temple in the crowd that moved through the Potdie' 
to the outer gates.* 

' This, although St. John vii. 53 rnnat 
be rejected a< Bpurious, Bnt the whole 
context seenm to imply, that for the pre- 
sent the ftodilory of JeaoB had diBpcrecd. 

* It iH, liowever, not unlikel7 that the 
first fliidtcss (TV. 12-19) may have been 
rlelivered on the afternoon of the ' Last 
Day ol the Feast,' when the cessation of 
preparations tor the Temple -illumination 
mar have given the outminl occasion for 
the words : ' I am the Light of the 

World.' The»iiA.Fof TV. IgandBlMB^ 
in each cnse to indicate a fresh period ^^ 
time. RcBiiiea, we can scarcely wppatf ** 
that all from vii, 37 to viit. 69 had tolW** 
place the same day. For this aad oU^' 
acgnnienta on the point, see Zfi«>«LnLi^ 
pp. 279-281. 

* The last clanses ol rei. S9, 'eoio^ 
tlirough the midst of them went His w*^' 
and aa passed by,' moat be omitted ^* 




But the narrative first transports ns into ' the Treasury/ where 
tlie Pharisees ' — or leaders — would alone venture to speak. It ought 
o be specially marked, that if they laid not hands on Jesus when He ' ' 

lared to teach in this sacred locality, and that such unwelcome doc- 
;ririe, His inmiunity must be ascribed to the higher appointment of 
Grod : * because His hour had not yet come.' * An archaeological ques- • ver. 20 
tion may here be raised as to the exact localisation of ^ the Treasury,' 
whether it was the colonnade around * the Coiui:- of the Women,' in 
wliich the receptacles for charitable contributions — the so-called 
Shcpharothy or * trumpets ' — were placed,^ or one of the two ^ cham- jshekai. vi 
bers ' in which, respectively, secret gifts * and votive offerings ^ were 
dei)08ited.** ' The former seems the most likely. In any case, it •shckai.y. 
would be within * the Court of the Women,' the common meeting- 
place of the worshippers, and, as we may say, the most generally 
attended part of the Sanctuary.* Here, in the hearing of the leaders 
of the people, took place the first Dialogue between Christ and the 

It evened with what probably was an allusion alike to one of the 
great ceremonies of the Feast of Tabernacles, to its symbolic mean- 
^) and to an express Messianic expectation of the Babbis. As the 
Mirfmah states : On the tirst,^ or, as the Talmud would have it,*' •• sacc t 2 
<» every night * of the festive week, * the Court of the Women ' «/ f : sSS! 
^M brilliantly illuminated, and the night spent in the demonstra- *' ** 
*wi8 already described. This was called * the joy of the feast.' This 
* festive joy,' of which the origin is obscure, was no doubt connected 
^ the hope of earth's great harvest-joy in the conversion of the 
heathen world, and so pointed to * the days of the Messiah.' In 
^'^'^ection with this we mark, that the term * light ' was specially 

.. ^ acHcalled 'chamber of the 
'^^'(Oaikaim^ ShekaL v. 6. 

Ute 'chamber of the vessels' (Che- 
*■)• It was probably over, or in this 
Cuamber that Agrippa hong up the golden 
DKmorial-chain of his captivity (Jo$, 
AJitiq. xix. «. 1). 

^ ' Comp. genially < The Temple and its 
"•^ices,' pp. 26, 27. 

* ^ * Court of the Women ' (yvratr 
••^ Jet. Jew. War v. 6. 8 ; comp. also 
^* ^ 2), 80 called, because women could 
JJ^penetrate further. It was the real 
^ of the Sanctuary. Here Jeremiah 
r^ tKoght (xix. 14 ; xrvi. 2). But it 
^^oonect to state (WestcoU), that 
I^Couicil Chamber of the Sanhedrin 
^^^^) was ' between the Court of the 

Women and the inner court.* It was in 
the south-eastern angle of the Court of 
the Priests — and hence at a considerable 
distance from the Court of the Women. 
But — not to speak of the circumstance 
that the Sanhedrin no longer met in that 
Chamber — even if it had been nearer, 
Christ's teaching in the Treasury could 
not (at any period) *have been within 
earshot of the Sanhedrin/ since it would 
not sit on that day. 

^ Although Rabbi Joshua tells (in the 
Talmud), that during all the nights of 
the festive week they did *not taste 
sleep,' this seems scarcely credible, and 
the statement of the Mishnah is the more 
rational. iiraif7t<mt<2^ however, adopts the 
view of the Talmud (Hilch. Lul.viii. 12). 



applied to the Messiah. In a very interesting passage of tie 
Midrash " we are fold, that, while commonly windows were made wide 

[ within and narrow without, it was the opposite in the Temple of 
Solomon, because the light issuing firom the Sanctuary was to lighten 
that which was without. This reminds us of the language of devout 

. old Simeon in regard to the Messiah," as *a light to lighten tie 
Gentiles, and the glory of His people Israel.' The Midrash further 
explains, that, if the light in the Sanctuary was fo be always barniiig 
before Jehovah, the reason was, not that He needed such light, bnt 
that He honoured Israel with this as a symbolic command. In 
Messianic times God would, in fulfilment of the prophetic meaning 
of this rite, ' kindle for them the Great Light,' and the nations of 
the world would point to them, who had lit the light for Him Who 
lightened the whole world. But even this is not all. The Eabtni 
Bpeak of the original light in which God had wrapped Himself as in 
a garment,* and which could not shine by day, because it would haw 
dimmed the light of the sun. From this light that of the sun, mots, 

■ and stars had been kindled.* It was now reserved under the throne 
of God for the Messiah," in Whose days it would shine forth once 
more. Lastly, we ought to refer to a passage in another Midraahi' 
where, after a remarkable discussion ou such names of the Meeaiah 
as 'the Lord our Righteousness,' 'the Branch,' 'the Comforter, 
' Shiloh,' ' Compassion,' His first Advent is connected \vith the d^ 
struction, and His return with the restoration of the Temple.' Bot 
in that very passage the Messiah is also specially designated as tUs 

- ' Enlightener,' the words :« 'the light dwelleth with Him,' being 
applied to Him, 

What has just been stated shows, that the MeBSianic hope of tb® 

I aged Simeon '' most truly expressed the Messianic thoughts of tb^ 
time. It also proves, that the Pharisees could not have mistake* 
the Messianic meaning in the words of Jesus, in their reference t" 
the past festivity: ' I am the Light of the world.' This circumstan*^ 
is itself evidential as regards this Discourse of Christ, the truth ot 
this narrative, and even the Jewish authorship of the Fourth Gospel* 
But, indeed, the whole Address, the argumentation with the Phari"' 
sees which follows, as well as the subsequent Discourse to, an*^ 
argumentation with, the Jews, are peculiarly Jewish in their form ct* 
reasoning. Substantially, these Discourses are a continuation 9^ 
those previously delivered at this Feast. But they cany the aiga-^ 

i£ regards the Mestriauio rieirs of di9 


inent one important step both backwards and forwards. The situa- chai-. 
tion had now become quite clear, and neither party cared to conceal ^m 
it. What Jesus had gradually communicated to the disciples, who 
were so unwilling to receive it, had now become an acknowledged 
&ct. It was no longer a secret that the leaders of Israel and Jerusalem 
were compassing the Death of Jesus. This imderlies all His Words. 
And He sought to turn them from their purpose, not by appealing to 
their pity nor to any lower motive, but by claiming as His right that, 
for which they would condemn Him. He was the Sent of God, the 
Messiah ; although, to know Him and His Mission, it needed moral 
kmship with Him that had sent Him. But this led to the very root 
of the matter. It needed moral kinship with God : did Israel, as such, 
p oas e ss it? They did Tiot; nay, no man possessed it, till given him 
•of GtxL This was not exactly new in these Discourses of Christ, but 
it was now &r more clearly stated and developed, and in that sense 

We also are too apt to overlook this teaching of Christ — perhaps 
ha?e overlooked it. It is concerning the corruption of our whole 
lUKtore by sin, and hence the need of God-teaching, if we are to 
xeoeive the Christ, or understand His doctrine. That which is bom 
ni the flesh is flesh; that which is bom of the Spirit is Spirit; 
therefore, * marvel not that I said. Ye must be bom again.' That 
Itfd been Christ's initial teaching to Nicodemus, and it became, with 
{rowing emphasis. His final teaching to the teachers of Israel. It is 
Mt St. Paul who first sets forth the doctrine of oinr entire moral 
^: he had learned it from the Christ. It forms the very basis 
<^ Christianity; it is the ultimate reason of the need of a Eedeemer, 
^ the raMorude of the work which Christ came to do. The Priest- 
hood and the Sacrificial Work of Christ, as well as the higher aspect 
of His Prophetic Office, and the true meaning of His Kingship, as 
^ of this world, are based upon it. Very markedly, it constitutes 
tte starting-point in the fundamental divergence between the leaders 
■rf the Synagogue and Christ — we might say, to all time between 
(^i^riitians and non-Christians. The teachers of Israel knew not, nor 
Wieved in the total corruption of man — Jew as well as Gentile — 
^ therefore, felt not the need of a Saviour. They could not 
'^^Antand it, how * Except a man ' — at least a Jew — were * bom 
*piii,' and, *from above,' he could not enter, nor even see, the 
^*DgdOTii of God* They understood not their^own Bible : the story 
<l the Fall — not Moses and the Prophets ; and how could they 
^otdentand Christ? they believed not them, and how could they 


BOOK believe Him ? And yet, fix)m this point of view, but only firom this, 
IV does all seem clear: the Incarnation, the History of the Temp- 
tation and Victory in the Wilderness, and even the Gross. Only he 
who has, in some measure, himself felt the agony of the first garden, 
can understand that of the second garden. Had they understood, 
by that personal experience which we must all have of it, the Proto- 
Evangel of the great contest, and of the great conquest by suflfering^ 
they would have followed its lines to their final goal in the Christ 
as the fulfilment of all. And so, here also, were the words of Chiist 
true, that it needed heavenly teaching, and kinship to the Divine, 
to understand His doctrine. 

This underlies, and is the main object of these Discourses d 
Christ. As a corollary He would teach, that Satan was not a merdj 
malicious, impish being, working outward destruction, but that there 
was a moral power of evil which held us all — not the Gentile worid 
only, but even the most favoured, learned, and exalted among the Jews. 
Of this power Satan was the concentration and impersonation; the 
prince of the power of * darkness.' This opens up the reasoning of 
Christ, alike as expressed and implied. He presented Himself to 
them as the Messiah, and hence as the Light of the World. It 
resulted, that only in following Him would a man ^ not walk in the 
darkness,'* but have the light — and that, be it marked, not the 
light of knowledge, but of life. On the other hand, it also followed, 
that all, who were not within this light, were in darkness and in 

It was an appeal to the moral in His hearers. The PhariBeei 
sought to turn it aside by an appeal to the external and visible. 
They asked for some witness, or palpable evidence, of what they called 
His testimony about Himself, well knowing that such could only be 
through some external, visible, miraculous manifestation, just as theiy 
had formerly asked for a sign from heaven. The Bible, and espe^ 
cially the Evangelic history, is full of what men ordinarily, and 
often thoughtlessly, call the miraculous. But, in this case, the 
miraculous would have become the magical, which it never is.. 
If Christ had yielded to their appeal, and transferred the questioit 
firom the moral to the coarsely external sphere. He would have ceased 
to be the Messiah of the Incarnation, Temptation, and Cross, tba 
Messiah-Saviour. It would have been to un-Messiah the Messiah dT 
the Gospel, for it was only, in another form, a repetition of the Tenq^ 
tation. A miracle or sign would at that moment have been a monJI 

' Mark here the definite article. 



anachronism — as much as any miracle would be in our days,^ when chap. 
the Christ makes His appeal to the moral, and is met by a demand vm 
for the external and material evidence of His Witness. " " 

The interruption of the Pharisees* was thoroughly Jewish, and 1^ J^ 

so was their objection. It had to be met, and that in the Jewish 

form * in which it had been raised, while the Christ must at the same 

time continue His former teaching to them concerning God and 

their own distance from Him. Their objection had proceeded on 

this fundamental judicial principle — *A person is not accredited 

about himself.'^ Harsh and unjust as this principle sometimes ochethab. 

was,* it evidently applied only in judicial cases, and hence implied 

that these Pharisees sat in judgment on Him as one suspected, and 

charged with guilt. The reply of Jesus was plain. Even if His 

testimony about Himself were unsupported, it would still be true, 

and He was competent to bear it, for He knew, as a matter of fact, 

whence He came and whither He went — His own part in this 

MisBion, and its goal, as well as God's — whereas they knew* not 

either.® But, more than this : their demand for a witness had pro- « st. John 

Deeded on the assumption of their being the judges, and He the 

panel — a relation which only arose from their judging after the flesh. 

Spiritual judgment upon that which was within belonged only to 

Him, that searcheth all secrets. Christ, while on earth, judged no 

man ; and, even if He did so, it must be remembered that He did 

it not alone, but with, and as the Eepresentative of, the Father. 

Hence, such judgment would be true.* But, as for their main *vv.i6,i« 

charge, was it either true, or good in law ? In accordance with the 

Iaw of God, there were two witnesses to the fact of His Mission : 

His own, and the frequently-shown attestation of His Father. And, 

i^ it were objected that a man could not bear witness in his own 

cause, the same Rabbinic canon laid it down, that this only applied 

^ Us testimony stood alone. But, if it were corroborated (even in 

* Blatter of greatest delicacy),* although by only one male or female 

slaye— who ordinarily were unfit for testimony — it would be credited. 

* It is Bubfltantially the same evi- 
^^ which IB demanded by the neg- 
'^ phyacists of onr days. Nor can 
I iouigine a more thorough misnnder- 
J^j^jdipg of the character and teaching of 
^^*>ti>tianity than, for example, the pro- 
M to test the efficacy of prayer, by 
i"^ iot the recovery of tnose in a 

JC-— ..- .«! This would represent 
'''■tlieoism, not Ohrisdanity. 

' We mtaik hero again the evidence 
°^ ^Jewish anthoiriiip of the Fourth 


' Thus the testimony of a man, that 
during the heathen occupancy of Jeru- 
salem his wife had never left him, was 
not allowed, and the husband forbidden 
his wife (Chethub. ii. 9). 

< Not, as in the A. V., *tell.* 

» Chethub. ii. 9. Such solitary testi- 
mony only when favourable, not when 
adverse. On the law of testimony gen- 
erally, comp. SaalichutZt Mos. Recht, pp. 
604, 605. 



Tbe reasoning of Christ, without for a moment quitting tlie luglier 
ground of Hie teaching, was quite unanswerable from the Jewish stand- 
point. The Pharisees felt it, and, though well knowing to 'Whoffl 
He referred, tried to evade it by the sneer — where (notWlKi)Hii, 
Father was ? This gave occasion for Christ to return to the muo 
subject of His Address, that the reason of their ignorance of Him 
was, that they knew not the Father, and, in turn, that only acknot- 
ledgment of Him would bring true knowledge of the Father. 

Such words would only ripen in the hearts of such men the murda- 
ous resolve against Jesus. Yet, not till Hia, not their, hour had come ! 
Presently, we find Him again, now in one of the Porches — ^probaU; 
that of Solomon — teaching, this time, * the Jews.' We imagine tlie; 
were chiefly, if not all, Judteans — perhaps JerusalemiteB, aware rf 
the murderous intent of their leaders — not His own Oalileaos, whim 
He addressed. It was in continuation of what had gone before- 
alike of what He had said to them, and of what they felt tomdi 
Him. The words are intensely sad — Christ's farewell to His rebel- 
liouB people, Hie tear-words over lost Israel ; abrupt also, as if li*J 
were torn sentences, or, else, headings for special discourses : ' I goWj 
way '— ' Ye shall seek Me, and in your sin ' shall ye die ' — ' Whithei 
I S"^) y^ cannot come ! ' And is it not all most true ? These manj 
centuries has Israel sought its Christ, and perished in its great sin cf 
rejecting Him ; and whither Christ and His Kingdom tended, Uk 
Synagogue and Judaism can never come. They thought that He 
spoke of His dying, and not, as He did, of that which came a&ec it- 
But, how could His dying establish such separation between them? 
This was the next question which rose in their minds.' Would thare 
be anything so peculiar about His dying, or, did His expression aboot 
going indicate a purpose of taking away His Own life ? * 

It was this misunderstanding which Jesus briefly but empfaft" 
tically corrected by telling them, that the ground of their aeparatio*' 
was the difference of their nature : they were from beneath. He &<HW3 

■ Not ■ sins,' as in the A. V. 5), but nosnpported by anj Babbinfi-' 

' OeuGtBll; this ia iindemUKXl as atatemeiiti. The Babbinic delimUcw 

Teferring to the supposed Jewisb belief, or ratbor limitBtioD — of what cooititiitfB 

that Hoicidea occnpied the lowest place snicide is remarkable. Thns, neithJS 

inQebeniia. But a glance at tbc context Saul, nor Ahitopbel, nor Zinui, am i^ 

must convince tbat tbe Jews could not garded as suicides, becaose thej did it ^ 

have onderatood Christ as meaning, tbat avoid faUing into the h&nds of llx^ 

He would be eepaxated from them b; enemies. For premeditated, real nidE^ 

being Bent to the lowest Gehenna. the punishment is left with Qod. 80^^ 

Besidee, this snpptwed pnoidhment ol difference is to be made is tikeboiU^ 

mitddea is 00)7 derived from a rhetorical snch, jet not such as to pat tiw BnniTO^ 

panage In Jotephtit (Jew. War iii. 8. to ahame. 


above ; they of this world, He not of this world. Hence they could 
not come where He would be, aince they mast die in their sin, as 
He had told them — 'if ye believe not that I am.' 

The words were intentionally mysteriously spoken, as to a Jewish 
audience. Believe not that Thoa art ! But * Who art Thou ? * 
Whether or not the words were spoken in acorn, their question con- 
demned themselves. In His broken sentence, Jesus had tried them 
— to see how they would complete it. Then it was so ! All this time 
they had not yet learned Who He was ; had not even a conviction 
on that point, either for or against Him, but were ready to be 
ffwayed by iheix leaders ! * Who I am ? ' — am I not telling you it 
even from the beginning ; has My testimony by word or deed ever 
swerved on this point? I am what all along, from the beginning, I 
tell you.' Then, putting aside this interruption, He resumed His 
argument. Many other things had He to say and to judge concern- 
ing them, besides the bitter truth of their perishing if they believed 
not that it was He— but He that had sent Hira was true, and He 
must ever speak into the world the message which He had received. 
When Christ referred to it as that which ' He heard from Him,' He 
evidently wished thereby to emphasise the fact of His Mission from 
God, as constituting His claim on their obedience of faith. But it 
WIS this very point which, even at that moment, they were not 
mderetanding.* And they would only leam it, not by His Words, ' 
bntby the event, when they had 'lifted Him up,' as they thought, to 
tlie Cross, but really on the way to His Glory.* Then would they 

. ' ItxFold be impoasiblQ here to enter 
"■to > critioLl ansljiis or vindication of 
wiatderiiig of this much controverted 
I*Mg*, adopted id the t«it. Tbo 
^'^^"i foQowed has been to letranslate 
"tnUj into Hebrew : 

^ Bttfat be rendered either, ' To begin 
■■li-He that I also teU yon ; ' or. ■ From 
™> U^nniiig He that I »lsa tell yon.' ' 
' Enter the latter, and its meaning seemB 
■•WiMiallj that of one A. V, 

' i* Caooa Wettrvtt rightl; points 
^(SLJohn lii 32), the term 'lifting 
y iadadea both the death and the 
WJ. If we ask ourselves vfhat corre- 
VMiag Hebrew word, including the 
***B mubu as well as the jmi»« bonuM, 
*i>dd bare been lucd, the verb Xaia 
vBi) natonUly occurs (oomp. Gen. zl. 
'* vith vsr. IS). For we suppose, that 
*" nad used bf Christ at this early 
^>t nf Hia Uinlstiy ocmld not have 

necessarily involved a prediction of His 
CruciUxion, and that they who heard it 
rather imagined it to refer to Hia Exalla- 
tioa. Tbere is a aiiriouBly illustrative 
passage here (in Fesikta K. 10), when a 
king, having given orders that the bead 
of his son should be 'lifted up' (ntt ItW 
ICtO), that it should be hanged op (f^n 
ICKI nKj.isexhortedbythe tutor to spare 
what was his ' moneginos ' (only begotten) 
On the king's replying that he was bound 
by the orders he had given, the totOT 
answers by pointing out that the verb 
JViua means lifting up in the sense of 
exalting, as well as of executing. But, 
besides the verb A'ata, there is also 
TelaCtt'^J^ or ri^n), which means In 
the first place to lift up, and second- 
arily to hang or crucify (see Zevf, Tar- 
gum. Worterb. ii, p. 639 a and £). If, as 
we rather think, the latter verb was used, 
then the Jewish expression Tali^, which 




Boraltlin v 



perceive the meaning of the desigDation He had given of Himself, 
and the claim fouaded on it ' : ' Then shall ye perceive that I am,* 
Meantime: ' And of Myself do I nothing, but as the' Father taught 
Me, these things do I speak. And He that sent Me is with Me. He * 
hath not left Me alone, becanse what pleases Him I do always.' 

If the Jews failed to underetaad the expression ' hfting up,' which 
might mean His Exaltation, though it did mean, in the first place, 
His Cross, there was that in His Appeal to Hia Words and Deeds as 
bearing witness to His Mission and to the Divine Help and Presence 
in it, which by its sincerity, eamestneBS, and reality, found its way 
to the hearts of many. Instinctively they felt and believed that 
His Mission must bf Divine. Whether or not this found articulate 
expression, Jesus now addressed Himself to those who thus far — B.^Zm 
least for the moment — ^believed on Him. They were at the crisis i»--S 
their spiritual history, and He must press home on them what IL^e 
had sought to teach at the first. By nature far from Him, thtt. j 
were bondsmen. Only if they abode in His Word would they kn*-""^ 
the truth, and the truth would make them free. The result of tl»-3» 
knowledge would be moral, and hence that knowledge consisted n-<3t 
in merely behering on Him, but in making His Word and teachix^ 
their dwelling—abiding in it.*" But it was this very moral applica- 
tion which they resisted. In this also Jesus had used their own 
forms of thinking and teaching, only in a much higher sense. For 
their own tradition had it, that he only was free who laboured in the 
study of the Law." Yet the liberty of which He spoke came not throngt 
study of the Ijaw,' but from abiding in the Word of Jesus. But itwM 
this very thing which they resisted. And so they ignored the spiritiial, i 
and fell back upon the national, application of the words of Christ. ; 
As this is once more evidential of the Jewish authorship of this \ 
Gospel, so also the characteristically Jewish boast, Ihat as the childreD 
of Abraham they had never been, and never could be, in real servi- 
tude. It would take too long to enumerate all the benefits supposed ' 
to be derived from descent from Abraham. SutBce here the almost fun- 
damental principle : ' All Israel are the children of Kings,'" and its 
application even to common life, thnt as ' the children of Abraham, 
Isaac, and Jacob, not even Solomon's feast could be too good for them.'* J 

ia still opprobrionriy givfux to Jesas, would 
after all represent the originnl desigcn- 
tion by whiph He described His own 
death as tbo ' lifted-up Dub.' 

' Not ■my.'aain A. V. 

• A new senlcnco ; and ' He.' not 'tbe 
Father.'asinlbc A-V. 

• With reference to Esod. izxil. 16, a 
play beiu^ made on the word OtanttX 
(■ praren ') wliich is interpreted CAtfimtit 
(' libertv '). The passage qooted by 
WHatfhe (Bnba Mez. 8G t) is not appli- 



Not 80, however, would the Lord allow them to pass it by. He chap. 
^inted them to another servitude which they knew not, that of sin,* vni 
%ad, entering at the same time also on their own ideas. He told them •st.joim 
tloflt continuance in this servitude would also lead to national bond- ^^ ^ 
tige and rejection : * For the servant abideth not in the house for 
€v«.*^ On the other hand, the Son abode there for ever ; whom 
He made free by adoption into His Family, they would be free 
in reality and essentially.^ * Then, for their very dulness. He would «» yer. as 
turn to their &vourite conceit of being Abraham's seed. There 
^M, indeed, an obvious sense in which, by their natural descent, 
they were such. But there was a moral descent — and that alone 
was of real value. Another, and to them wholly new, and heavenly 
teaching this, which our Lord presently applied in a manner they 
<»nld neither misunderstand nor gainsay, while He at the same time 
connected it with the general drift of His teaching. Abraham's seed ? 
But they entertained purposes of murder, and that, because the 
" ord of Christ had not free course, made not way in them.' His 
VordTraswhat He had seenvnih (before) the Father,* not heard — ^for 
His Presence there was Eternal. Their deeds were what they had 
^^from their father* — the word * seen ' in our common text depend- 
^°f on a wrong reading. And this — in answer to their interpellation 
~"fle shows them, could not have been Abraham — so far as spiritual 
"Cseentwas concerned.® They had now a glim])se of His meaning, •▼v. st-w 
°^tonly to misapply it, according to their Jewish prejudice. Their 
^knal descent, they urged, must be of God, since their descent from 
Abraham was legitimate.^ But the Lord dispelled even this conceit * ^^' *i 
'y showing, that if theirs were spiritual descent from God, then would 
^®y not reject His Message, nor seek to kill Him, but recognise and 
lo^e Him.* ' ^^^- ^^ 

But whence all this misunderstanding of His speech ? ® Because 
they were morally incapable of hearing it — and this because of the 
s^fiilness of their nature : an element which Judaism had never 
t^en into account. And so, with infinite Wisdom, Christ once more 
"'onght back His Discourse to what He would teach them concem- 
^g man's need, whether he be Jew or Gentile, of a Saviour and of 
^^newing by the Holy Ghost. If the Jews were morally unable to 

' Here there shoald be a full stop, and so far understand and could have sym- 

^^•8 in the A. V. pathised, had the trutli been in them. 

' '^mt. Comp. Weitcatt ad loc. * According to the proper reading, the 

' 8o Canon Westeatt aptly renders it. rendering must be * from your father,' 

* Not • My Father,* as in the A. V. not * with your father,' as in the A. V. 

"*^ little changes are most important, • The word here is \a\id. 
^ ^e remember that the hearers would 

• Car. R. BG 


hear His word and cherislied murderous designs, it vas because, 
morally speaking, their descent was of the Devil. Very differently 
from Jewish ideas ' did He speak concerning the moral evil of Satan, 
as both a murderer and a liar — a murderer from the beginning of 
the history of our race, and one who ' stood not in the truth, because 
truth is not in him.' Hence ' whenever he speaketh a lie' — whether 
to our first parents, or now concerning the Clirist— ' he speaketb 
&om out his own (things), for he (Satan) is a har, and the father of 
such an one (who telleth or believeth lies).' * Which of ihem could 
convict Him of sin ? If therefore He spake truth,^ and they believed 
Him not, it was because they were not of God, but, as He liad shows 
them, of their fether, the Devil. 

The argument was unanswerable, and there seemed only mt 
way to turn it aside — a Jewish Tki, quoque, an adaptation of the 
' Physician, heal thyself : ' Do we not say rightly, that Thou art a 
Samaritan, and hast a demon?' It is etr.inge that the first clause of 
this reproach should have been so misunderstood, and yet its dired 
explanation lies on the siurface. We have only to retranslate it inta 
the language which the Jews had used. By no strain of ingenni^ 
is it possible to account for the designation ' Samaritan,' as given ly 
the Jews to Jesus, if it is regarded as referring to nationality. Eren 
at that very Feast they had made it an objection to His Messisnic 
claims, that He was (as they supposed) a Galilean/ Nor had He oome 
to Jerusalem from Samaria j"* nor could He be so called (as CbmnMO- 
tators suggest) because He was 'a foe ' to Israel, or ' a breaker of tE© 
Law,' or ' nnfit to bear witness ' * — for neither of these circnmstaace* 
would have led the Jews to designate Him by the term ' Samaritan- 
But, in the language which they spoke, what is rendered into GreeJ* 
by ' Samaritan,' would have been either Cittlti (>ni3)) which, whiL^ 
Uterally meaning a Samaritan, is almost as often used in the sense c^ 
' heretic^ or else Shovironi ('jiiDc)- The latter word deserves spedi^ 
attention.* Literally, it also means ' Samaritan ; ' but, the 
Shomrmi (perhaps; from its connection with Samaria), is also 
times used as the equivalent oi Ashmedaiy the prince of the demons. 
According to the Kabbalists, Shomron was the father of Ashmedai, w*-"^ 
hence the same as Saimnael, or Satan. That this was a wide-sprew^ 


■ See Boot II. ch. v. 

■ I cannot regaid 0.111011 Wateott't 
ceudecing, whioh is placet! in the msrgin 
o( the IteviBed Version, ns satisfaotoiy. 

■ Id the t«xl withoat the article. 

' Tha passage iiuotad by Sel^Ugim 
(.Yebam. i7 a.^) is inapplicable, aa it rtallij 

refers to a non-Iaraelile. More apt, b — 
aliio QDsnit&ble, is Sot. 2S a, quoted ^^J 

' Comp. Koknt, Jiid AngeloL p. 96. 

' See the Appendix on Jewish Lag 
ology and Deawaology. 


BOOK Abraham — he had ' exalted' in the thought of the coming day of tk^^ 
IT Christ, and, seeing its glory, he was glad. Even Jewish tradition w aal^ -y 
' scarcely gainsay this, since there were two parties in the Synagogtse^ 
of which one believed that, when that horror of great darkness feU 
■ am. XT. IT on him,* Abraham had, in vision, been shown not only this, bnt th^ 
coining world — and not only all events in the present ' age,' bnfc 
JJ^^ also those in Messianic times.^' And now, theirs was not misnndar— 
aT^nn standing, bat wilful misinterpretation. He had spoken of AbiahiSB- 
i^ij^ftwn geeing His day; they took it of His seeing Abraham's day, lad 
challenged its possibility. ^Tiether or not they intended thnt tc» 
elicit an avowal of His claim to eternal duration, and hence tc^ 
Divinity, it was not time any longer to forbear ^e full statenmb^ 
and, with Divine emphasis, He spake the words which could not b^' 
mistaken; * Verily, verily, I say unto you, before Abraham in»v 
I AM.' 

It was as if they had only waited for this. Furiously th^^ 
rushed from the Porch into the Court of the Gentiles — with gym— 
bolic significance, even in this — to pick up stones, and to cast tbox:*- 
at Him. But, once more, His hour had not yet come, and their fm^' 
proved impotent. Hiding Himself for the moment, as might K^' 
easily be done, in one of the many chambers, passages, or gateway^ 
of the Temple, He presently passed out. 

It had been the first plain disclosure and avowal of His Divint^''* 
and it was * in the midst of His enemies,' and when most conteof*^ 
was cast upon Him. Presently would that avowal be renewed bot3> 
in Word and by Deed ; for ' the end ' of mercy and judgment imid. 
not yet come, but was drawing terribly nigh. 

■ In the TargniD Jerusalem on Geo. xv. tormenta. So far aa I can gsUMT, «b^ 

also it seems implied thatAbraham saw in the latter, not the former, iiiiiiiin 1bi|i11m 

visioD all that would befall his children in the Targ. Psendo-Jonatlkaii. 
in the Inture, and also Gehenna aurl its 




(St. Jotui ix.) 

ene in the Temple described in the last chapter, and 
jqnent withdrawal from His enemies, we can scarcely 
ither great event to have taken place on that day within " 
precincts of the Sanctuary. And yet, £rom the close 
the narratives, we are led to infer that no long interval 
ive elapsed before the healing of the man bom blind.' 
opened the day after the events just recorded. We know 
Sabbath,* and this fresh mark of time, as well as the • 
things done, and the whole style of the narrative, con- 
f that it was not on the evening of the day when He 
"*< "t^«.v- . them first in ' the Treasury,' and then in the Porch. 

Od two other points there is strong presumption, though we 
**Bi>ot offer actual proof. Bemembering, that the entrance to the 
legale or its Courts was then — as that of churches is on the Con- 
"iwat — the chosen spot for those who, as objects of pity, solicited 
''"'ity;* remembering, also, how rapidly the healing of the blind ' 
'"■A became known, and how soon both his parents and the healed 
""Ml himself appeared before the Pharisees — presumably, in the 
Temple; lastly, how readily the Saviour knew where again to find 
'''•ii.^we can scarcely doubt that the miracle took place at the ; 
*'itering to the Temple, or on the Temple-Mount. Secondly, both 
™* Wwk, and specially the Words of Christ, seem in such close con- 
"WUoD with what bad preceded, that we can scarcely be mistaken in 
'*B*''ling them as intended to form a continuation of it. 

It is not difficult to realise the scene, nor to understand the 
'Httarb of all who had part in it. It was the Sabbath— ^the day 

.' Oniet tupposea that it had taken the ■ Feast of the Dedication.' Bat his 

^ontbeeveniag of theOctave of the argument on the subject, from another 

'"t- On the other hand, Canon Wctt- rendering of St. John x. 32, has failed 

'*' ■oold relegate both cb. ii. and x. to ' 
»OLn. : 


■pecific diseases in their oSspring, acd one is mentioned * as cans- chap. 
ing blindness in the children.' But the impression left on oar ix 
mimls is, that the disciples felt not sure as to either of these sola- • ntdv. wa 
tSfOU of the difficulty. It seemed a mystery, inexplicable on the sup- 
poa&ni of God's infinite goodness, and to which they sought to apply 
HiB cmnmon Jewish solution. Many similar mysteries meet ns in 
tlie tdministration of Oxid's Providence — questions, which seem un- 
■nmable, but to which we try to give answers, perhaps, not much 
"irinrthan the explanations suggested by the disciples. 

Bnt why seek to answer them at all, since we posaesa not all, 
priups very few of, the data requisite for it ? There is one aspect, 
bmnvw, of adversity, and of a strange dispensation of evil, on which 
Hkb Hj^t of Christ's Words here shines with the brightness of a new 
Burning. There is a physical, natural reason for them. God has 
Brttpecially sent them, in the sense of His interference or primary 
OOMtioD, although He kaa sent them in the sense of His knowledge, 
*iD,Bid reign. They have come in the ordinary course of things, 
■sd are traceable to causes which, if we only knew them, would 
*WV to ns the sequence of the laws which G-od has imposed on 
^ CKation, and which are necessary for its orderly continuance. 
•And, finther, all snch evil consequences, from the operation of God's 
k*i,att in the last instance to be traced back to the curse which 
is haa brought upon man and on earth. With these His Laws, and 
lifih their evil sequences to us through the curse of sin, God does 
■o* Urtflifere in the ordinary coarse of His Providence ; although 
***mild be daring, who would negative the possibility of what may 
"on, though it is not, interference, since the natural causes which 
•■d to these evil consequences may so easily, naturally, and ration- 
*^be affected. Bnt there is another and a higher aspect of it, since 
^^>iit has come, and is really the Healer of all disease and evil by 
'^'ing the Eemover of its ultimate moral Cause. This is indicated in 
■^ Words, when, putting aside the clumsy alternative saggested by 
^ ditdples, He told them that it was so in order * that the works 
^ Qod might be made manifest in him.' They wanted to know the 
^^J,' He told them the * in order to,' of the man's calamity ; they 
^hed to understand its reason as regarded its origin, He told them 
*t« reasonableness in regard to the piirpose which it, and all similar 
'''Biwing, should serve, since Christ has come, the Healer of evil — 

^ It the MUM time those opinions, ri dual teacher. The latter are cynically 
^Nd) an bued on higher mor^ viewa and coarsely set aside by 'the sages' in 
■IS only those ol an indi- Kedar. 30 b. 



after the Octave of the Feast, and Christ with His disciples was 
passing — presumably when going into the Temple, where this blind 
beggar was wont to sit, probably soliciting alms, perhaps in some -■ 
Buch terms as these, which were common at the time: *Gain merit-- 
by me;' or, '0 tenderhearted, by me gain merit, to thine owb^ 
benefit.' But on the Sabbath he would, of course, neither ask nor- , 
receive alms, though his presence in the wonted place would secure^ j 
wider notice, and perhaps lead to many private gifts. Indeed, the 

» blind were regarded as specially entitled to charity;' and the Jeru- 
salem Talmud '' relates some touching instances of the delicacy dis- 
played tflwards such. As the Master and His disciples passed the 
blind beggar, Jesus * saw ' him, with that look which they who fol- 
lowed Him knew to be full of meaning. Yet, so thoroughly Judaised 
were they by their late contact with the Pharisees, that no thought of 
possible mercy came to them, only a truly and characteristically 
Jewishquestion, addressed to Him expressly,and as 'Rabbi:*' through 
whose guilt this blindness bad befallen him— through his owb, or 
that of his parents. 

For, thoroughly Jewish the question was. Many instances could 
be adduced, in which one or another sin is said to have been punished 
by some immediate stroke, disease, or even by death ; and we con- 
stantly find Riibbis, when meeting such unfortunate persons, asking 
them, how or by what sin this had come to them. But, as this man 
was ' blind from his birth,' the possibiUty of some actual sin before 
birth would suggest itself, at least as a speculative question, since the 
' evil impulse ' (Yezer haEa), might even then be called into soti- 

' vity." At the same time, both the Talmud and the later charge of 
the Pharisees, ' In sins wast thou bom altogether,' imply that in 
8uch cases the alternative esplanatiou would be considered, that the 
blindness might be caused by the sin of his parents.' It was a com- 
mon Jewish view, that the merits or demerits of the parents would 
appear in the children. In fact, up to thirteen years of age a child 
was considered, as it were, part of his father, and as suffering for his 
guilt.* More than that, the thoughts of a mother might affect the 
moral state of her unborn offspring, and the terrible apostasy of one 
of the greatest Rabbis had, in popular belief, been caused by the 
sinful delight his mother had taken when passing through an idol- 
grove.' Lastly, certain special sins in the parents would result in 

' So in the original. qaiW etTOoeouBly.BappoGcdUiat Jaw^tv* 

■ Tbiaopiuion tias.liowever, nothing to imputed to the PhaTiEees. The misimdu- 

do with ' the niigmtion of bohU'— a standiDg of Jew. War iL 8. li, ahoold be 

docttiiie which it liaa been generally, but corrected by Aniiq. xviii. 1, 3. 


vpecifio diseases in their offspricg, and one is mentioned * as cans- chap. 
ing blindneBs in the children.' Bnt the impression left on onr ix 
minds is, that the disciples felt not sure as to either of these sola- • ti«d*r. to* 
tions of the difficulty. It seemed a mystery, inexplicable on the sop- 
podtioD of Q-od's infinite goodness, and to which they sought to apply 
the common Jewish solution. Many similar mysteries meet ns in 
the administration of Grod's Providence — questions, which seem on- 
answeiahle, but to which we try to give answers, perhaps, not much 
wiser than the explanations suggested by the disciples. 

But why seek to answer them at all, since we possess not all, 
perhape very few of, the data requisite for it ? There is one aspect, 
however, of adversity, and of a strange dispensation of evil, on which 
the light of Christ's Words here shines with the brightness of a new 
morning. There is a physical, natural reason for them. CKxl has 
not specially sent them, in the sense of His interference or primary 
cansation, although He has sent them in the sense of His knowledge, 
will, and reign. They have come in the ordinary course of things, 
and are traceable to causes which, if we only knew them, would 
appear to as the sequence of the laws which G-od has imposed on 
His creatioD, and which are necessary for its orderly continuance. 
And, foither, all such evil consequences, from the operation of Crod's 
laws, aie in the last instance to be traced back to the curse which 
sin has brought upon man and on earth. With these His Laws, and 
with their evil sequences to us through the curse of sin, G-od does 
not interfere in the ordinary course of His Providence ; although 
he would be daring, who would negative the possibility of what may 
seem* though it is not, interference, since the natural causes which 
lead to these evil coDsequences may so easily, naturally, and ration- 
ally be affected. But there is another and a higher aspect of it, since 
Christ has come, and is really the Healer of all disease and evil by 
being the Remover of its ultimate moral tonse. This is indicated in 
His words, when, putting aside the clumsy alternative suggested by 
the diBci|des, He told them that it was so in order * that the works 
of Ood might be made manifest in him.' They wanted to know the 
* why,' He told them the ' in order to,' of the man's calamity ; they 
wished to understand its reason as regarded its origin. He told them 
ita reasonableness in regard to the purpose which it, and all similar 
sufFering, should serve, since Christ has come, the Healer of evil — 

■ At tha Mma time thooe opinions, vidiul teacher. Tbe latter ara trnically 
wUch anbued on higher moral views and ooarael; set aside by 'the sages' in 
B onlj thoae ol an iadl- Nedar. SO b. 


because the SaWour from sin. Ttius He transferred the qaeetion 
from inf«llectaal ground to that of the moral purpose which suffer- 
ing might serve. And this not in itself, nor hy any destiny or 
appointment, but because the Coming and Work of the Christ has 
made it jxiseible to us all. Sin and its sequences are still the same, 
for 'the world is eetabliehed that it cannot move.' Bntoveritali 
has risen the Sun of Righteousness with healing in His wings ; and, 
if we but open ourselves to His influence, they may serve this pur- 
pose, and so have this for the reason, not of their genesis, hut of 
their continuance, ' that the works of God may be made manifest.' 

To make this the reality to us, was ' the work of Him ' Who sent, 
and for which He sent, the Christ. And rapidly now must He work 
it, for perpetual example, during the few hours still left of His brief 
working-day. This figure was not unfamiliar to the Jews,' though 
it may well be that, by thus emphasising the briefness of the time. He 
may also have anticipated any objection to His healing on the 
Sabbath. But it is of even more importance to notice, how the two 
leading thoughts of the previous day's Discourse were now again 
taken up and set forth in the miracle that followed. These viere, 
that He did the Work which God had sent Him to do,** and that He 
was the Light of the world.'' As its Light He could not but shine 
so long as He was in it. And this He presently symbolised (and is 
not every miracle a symbol ?) in the healing of the blind. 

Once more we notice, how in His Deeds, as in His Words, the 
Lord adopted the forms known and used by His contemporaries, while 
He filled them with quite other substance. It has already been 
stated,' that saliva was commonly regarded as a remedy for diseases 
of the eye, although, of course, not for the removal of blindness. 
With this He made clay, which He now used, adding to it the direc- 
tion to go and wash in the Pool of Siloani, a terra which literally 
meant ' sent.'* A symbolism, this, of Him WTio was the Sent of the 
Father. For, all is here qmibolical : the cure and its means. If 
we ask ourselves why means were used in this instance, we can only 
suggest, that it was partly for the sake of him who was to be healed, 
partly for theirs who afterwards heard of it. For, the blind man seems 
to have been ignorant of the character of his Healer,^ and it needed 
the use of some means to make him, so to speak, receptive. On the 
other hand, not only the use of means, but their inadequacy to the 

' See Book in. ch. nxiv. p. 48. called in quMtion. As to the sptipg 

* The etymological correctness of the SUaam, see cb. vii. of this Bouk. 
renclering Siloam by ' tient ' ie no longer 


*IT IS HE'— *N0, BUT HE IS LIKE HEM.' 181 

olgect, must have impressed all. Symbolical, also, were these means, chap. 
Sight was restored by clay, made out of the groimd with the spittle DC 
of Him, Whose breath had at the first breathed life into clay ; and ' " 

this was then washed away in the Pool of Siloam, from whose waters 
liad been drawn on the Feast of Tabernacles that which symbolised the 
forthpouring of the new life by the Spirit. Lastly, if it be asked 
why snch miracle should have been wrought on one who had not 
previous &ith, who does not even seem to have known about the 
Christ, we can only repeat, that the man himself was intended to 
be a symbol, * that the works of God should be made manifest in 

And so, what the Pharisees had sought in vain, was freely vouch- 
safed when there was need for it. With inimitable simplicity, itself 
evidence that no legend is told, the man's obedience and healing are 
recorded. We judge, that his first impulse when healed must have 
been to seek for Jesus, naturally, where he had first met Him. On 
his way, probably past his own house to tell his parents, and again 
on the spot where he had so long sat begging, all who had known him 
must have noticed the great change that had passed over him. So 
marvellous, indeed, did it appear, that, while part of the crowd that 
gathered would, of course, acknowledge his identity, others would 
say : * No, but he is like him ; ' in their suspiciousness looking for 
some imposture. For there can be Uttle doubt, that on his way he 
must have learned more about Jesus than merely His Name,* and in •▼er.ii 
turn have communicated to his informants the story of his healing. 
Similarly, the formal question now put to him by the Jews was as 
much, if not more, a preparatory inquisition than the outcome of a 
wish to learn the circumstances of his healing. And so we notice 
in his answer the cautious desire not to say anything that could 
incriminate his Benefactor. He tells the facts truthfully, plainly ; 
he accentuates by what means he had * recovered,' * not received^ 
fflght ; but otherwise gives no clue by which either to discover or 
to incriminate Jesus.** ^ ^^' ^ 

Presently they bring him to the Pharisees, not to take notice of 
his healing, but to fotmd on it a charge against Christ. Such must 
have been their motive, since it was universally known that the 
^^adcrs of the people had, of course informally, agreed to take the 
■^^ctest measures, not only against the Christ, but against any one 
'^ho professed to be His disciple.® The ground on which the present « ver. » 
^l^aige against Jesus would rest was plain : the healing involved a 

* This ifl the proper rendering. The organs of sight existed, bnt oonld not be used. 




manifold breach of the Sabbath-Law. The first of these was that 
He had made clay." Neit, it would be a quetttion whether any— 
remedy might be applied. Such could only be done in diseases of 
the internal organs (from the throat downwards), except when danger 
to life or the loss of an organ was involved.'' It was, indeed, declared 
lawful to apply, for example, wine to the outside of the eyelid, OB 
the ground that this might be treated as washing ; but it was ainfiil I 
to apply it to the inside of the eye. And as regards saliva, iU I 
application to the eye is expressly forbidden, on the ground that it 
was evidently intended as a remedy." 

There was, therefore, abimdant legal ground for a criminal charge. 
And, although on the Sabbath the Sanbedrin would not hold any 
formal meeting, nor, even had there been such, would the testimony 
of one man have sufficed, yet ' the Pharisees ' set the inquiry regu- 
larly on foot. First, as if not satisfied with the report of those who 
had brought the man, they made him repeat it."" The simplicity of 
the man's language left no room for evasion or subterfuge. Rabbin- 
ism was on its great trial. The wondrous &ct could neither be 
denied nor explained, and the only ground for resisting the legiti- 
mate inference as to the character of Him Who had done it, waa its 
inconsistence with their traditional law. The alternative was: 
whether their traditional law of Sabbath-observance, or else He 
Who had done such miracles, was Divine ? Waa Christ not of God, 
because He did not keep the Sabbath in their way? But, then, 
could an open transgressor of God's Law do such miracles ? In this 
dilemma they turned to the simple man before them. ' Seeing that 
He opened ' his eyes, what did he say of Him ? what was the im- 
pression left on his mind, who had the best opportunity forjudging? 

There is something very peculiar, and, in one sense, most in- 
structive, as to the genei-al opinion entertained even by the best- 
disposed who had not yet been taught the higher truth, in this reply, 
BO simple, solemn, so comprehensive in its sequences, and yet so 
utterly inadequate by itself: ' He is a Prophet.' One possibility 
still remained. After all, the man might not have been really blind ; 
and they might, by cross-examining the jiarents, elicit that about lus 
original condition which would explain the pretended cure. But on 
this most, important point, the parents, with all their fear of the 
anger of the Pharisees, remained unshaken. He had been bom 
blind ; but as to the manner of his cure, they declined to oflFer any 
opinion. Thus, as so often, the machinations of the enemies of 
Christ led to results the opposite of those wished for. For, to | 

For, to Moriej 


«o wretchedly poor as to allow their son to live by begging,' the con- 
«eqaeiices of being ' un-Synagogued,' or put outside the congrega- 
tion * — which was to be the punishment of any who confessed Jcbub 
as the Messiah — would haye been dreadful. Talmudic writings 
apeak of two, or rather, we should eay, three, kinds of ' excommuni- 
'Catiouj' of which the two first were chiefly disciplinaiy, while the 
third was the real ' castiug out,' ' un-Synagoguing,' ' cutting oGf from 
theoongregation.'* The general designation* for* excommunication' 
was JSButmmatta, although, according to its literal meaning, the term 
would only apply to the severest form of it.° The first and lightest 
d^piee was the so-called Nesiphah or Neaipkutha ; properly, ' a re- 
bok^' an inveighing. Ordinarily, its duration extended over seven 
clays ; but, if pronounced by the Nasi, or Head of the Sanhedrin, it 
lasted for thirty days. In later times, however, it only rested for 
<ne day on the guilty person.' Perhaps St. Paul referred to this * 
* rebake ' in the expression which he used about an offending Elder.o » 
He certainly adopted the practice in Palestine,^ when he would not 
have an Elder < rebuked,' although he went far beyond it when he 
would have such ' entreated.' In Palestine it was ordered, that an 
offendiDg Babbi should be scourged instead of being excommunicated.'^ * 
Yet another direction of St. Paul's is evidently derived from these J, 
airangements of the Synagogue, although applied in a &r different 
spirit. When the Apostle wrote : ' An heretic after the first and second 
admonition reject ; ' there must have been in his mind the second 
degree of Jewish excommunication, the so-called J^Tiddw. (from the 
verb to thrust, thrust out, cast out). This lasted for thirty days 
at the least, although among the Babylonians only for seven days.^ " 
At the end of that term there was ' a second admonition,' which 
lasted other thirty days. If still imrepentant, the third, or real ex- 
«cnimmnication, was pronounced, which was called the Ckerem., or 
ban, and of which the doration was indefinite. Any three persons, 
or even one duly authorised, could pronounce the lowest sentence. 

* Both BvxUrrf and Levy have mads 
tMa abnndantlj cleai, bat Jewish aDthori- 
ties are not mmting nbich Tegard thli 
aa the worst kind of ban. 

' Lemi derives it Irom IDC. to deatroy, 
to root oat. The Babbimc derivation* 
in Moed E. 17 a, ore oulf aplaj upon 
the word. 

* BDt then oertainlr were aotabte 
exoeptioDS to this rale, even ia Paleetine. 
Among the Babylonian Jews it did not 
obtain at alL 

o the 

T would warrant begging, and to 
"y needletal;, jt to timnlata 

J ■ for the pnrpoee, wonld, 

"■"iidly, bring the reality in puniah- 

, . ^•"FAftrjpui Ttnvfai. So also St. 
*»ia.«; xvi. 2. 
' b te. Hoed K. 81 ^ line 80 bom 

'^= Wfo ^' mn. 





The greater excommunication {Niddui) — which, happily, could oiity~ 
be pronounced in an assembly of t«n — must have been terrible, bein^^ 
accompanied by curses,' ' and, at a later period, sometimes proclaimed. 
with the blast of the horn.'' If the person so visited occupied an 
honotirable position, it was the cnstom to intimate his sentence in b 
euphemistic manner, such as : ' It seems to me that thy conipaniooe 
are separating themselves from thee.' He who was so, or similarlj 
addressed, would only too well understand its meaning. Henceforth 
he would sit on the ground, and bear himself like one in deep mourn- 
ing. He would allow his beard and hair to grow wild and shaggy; 
he would not bathe, nor anoint himself; he would not be admitted 
into any assembly of ten men, neither to public prayer, nor to the 
Academy ; though he might either teach, or be taught by, single 
individuals. Nay, as if he were a leper, people would keep at a dis- 
tance of four cubits from him. If he died, stones were cast on his 
coffin, nor was he allowed the honour of the ordinary funeral, nor 
were they to mourn for him. Still more terrible was the final ex- 
communication, or Cherem, when a ban of indefinite duration was 
laid on a man. Henceforth he was like one dead. He was not 
allowed to study with others, no intercourse was to be held with him^ 
he was not even to be shown the road. He might, indeed, buy the 
necessaries of life, bnt it was forbidden to eat or drink with such an 

We can understand,bow everyone would dread sncb an anathema. 
But when we remember, what it would involve to persons in the rank 
of life, and so miserably poor as the parents of that blind man, we 
no longer wonder at their evasion of the question put by the 
Sanhedrin. And if we ask ourselves, on what ground so terrible a 
punishment could be inflicted to all time and in every place — for the 
ban once pronounced appbed everywhere — simply for the confession 
of Jesus as the Christ, the answer is not difficult. The Rabbinists 
enumerate twenty-four grounds for escommunication, of which more 
than one might serve the purpose of the Pharisees. But in general, 
to resist the authority of the Scribes, or any of their decrees, or to 
lead others either away from ' the commandments,' or to what was 
regarded as profanation of the Divine Name, was sufficient to incur 
the ban, while it must be borne in mind, that 'if a teacher was 
I excommunicated, all his disciples were excommunicated with him.'* 

' Bvxtof/ here reminds iu of 1 Cor, nnaiiiemfltiaod to the •ound of 400 tnun- 
V. G. pets. The piuixiigs does m 

' There oar Lord is uid to Iiave beea eiporgaled editiona of the T 

Dot appear in. th» J 
he Talmaa. J 


As nothing conld be elicited from hie parents, the man who bad 
been blind was once more summoned before the Pharisees. It was 
no longer to inqaire into the reality of his alleged blindness, nor 
to ask about the cure, but simply to demand of him recantation, 
tboo^ this was pat in the most specious manner. Thou hast been 
healed : own that it was only by God's Hand miraculonsly stretched 
forth,' and that * this man ' had nothing to do with it, save that the 
coincidence may have been allowed to try the faith of Israel. It 
conld not have been Jesus Who had done it, for they knew Him to 
be * a sinner.' Of the two alternatives they had chosen the absolute 
lightness of their own Sabbath-traditions as against the evidence of 
Htfl Miracles. Virtually, then, this was the condemnation of Christ 
and the apotheosis of traditionalism. And yet, false as their con- 
clusion was, there was this truth in their premisses, that they judged 
of miiacles by the moral evidence in regard to Him, WTio was repre- 
sented as working them. 

But he who had been healed of his blindness was not to be so 
betrayed into a dennnciation of his great Physician. The simpli- 
city and earnestness of his convictions enabled him to gain even a 
logical victory. It was his turn now to bring back the question to 
the issoe which they had originally raised ; and we admire it all 
the more, as we remember the consequences to this p<x>r man of 
thos daring the Pharisees. As against their opinion about Jesus, as 
to the correctness of which neither he nor others could have direct 
knowledge,* there was the unquestionable fact of his healing, of which 
he had personal knowledge. The renewed inquiry now by the Phari- 
sees, as to the manner in which Jesus had healed him, might have had 
for its object to betray the man into a positive confession, or to elicit 
something demoniacal in the mode of the cnre. The blind man had 
now folly the advantage. He had aheady told them ; why the renewed 
inqniiy? As he put it half ironically: Was it because they felt the 
wnmgDess of their own position, and that they should become His 
disciples? It stnng them to the quick ; they lost all self-possession, 
sad with this their moral defeat became complete. * Thou art the 
dittiple of that man, but we (according to the favourite phrase) are 
the disciples of Moses.' Of the Divine Mission of Moses they knew, 
•"it of the Mission of Jesus they knew nothing. The unlettered 

' Ibe Gonimon view ( JTsyn-, WatUni, It implies ' that the cnre vms doe directly 

"^totf} ii, that the expreEaloa, 'GiTe to God.' 

P^TtoOod ' wu meielj a fonnnla ol 'In the original: "If He la a fiauer, I 

"**U •djonliOD, like Jo«h. vil. 19. koownot Oae tMitjr I know, that, being 

»«nn K>, M Canon Wetteatt remarks, blind, now I aee.' 


man had now the full advantage in the controversy. * In thiSi in- 
deed,* there was *the marvellous,' that the leaders of Israel should 
confess themselves ignorant of the authority of One, Who had power 
to open the eyes of the blind — a marvel which had never before been 
witnessed. If He had that power, whence had He obtained it, and 
why? It could only have been from God. They said, He was 'a 
sinner ' — ^and yet there was no principle more frequently repeated 
^^"••J; by the Eabbis,* than that answers to prayer depended on a man 
Y***'^28"a* ^"^ * devout' and doing the Will of God. There could therefore 
be only one inference : If Jesus had not Divine Authority, He oonid 
not have had Divine Power. 

The argument was unanswerable, and in its unanswerablenett 
shows us, not indeed the purpose, but the evidential force of Christ's 
Miracles. In one sense they had no purpose, or rather were purpose to 
themselves, being the forthbursting of His Power and the manifestar 
tion of His Being and Mission, of which latter, as applied to things 
physical, they were part. But the truthful reasoning of that un- 
tutored man, which confounded the acuteness of the sages, shows the 
effect of these manifestations on all whose hearts were open to tlie 
truth. The Pharisees had nothing to answer, and, as not unfre- 
quently in analogous cases, could only, in their fury, cast him out 
with bitter reproaches. Would he teach them — he, whose very dis- 
ease showed him to have been a child conceived and bom in sin, and 
who, ever since his birth, had been among ignorant, Law-neglecting 
* sinners'? But there was Another, Who watched and knew him: 
He Whom, so far as he knew, he had dared to confess, and for Whom 
he was content to suffer. Let him now have the reward of his faith, 
even its completion ; and so shall it become manifest to all time, 
how, as we follow and cherish the better light, it riseth upon us in 
all its brightness, and that faithfulness in little bringeth the greater 
stewardship. Tenderly did Jesus seek him out, wherever it may have 
been ; and, as He found him, this one question did He ask, whether the 
conviction of his experience was not growing into the higher £sdth (sf 
the yet unseen : * Dost thou believe on the Son of God ? ' * He had- 
had personal experience of Him — was not that such as to lead up to^ 
the higher faith ? And is it not always so, that the higher &ifh » 
based on the conviction of personal experience — that we believe on- 

' With all respect for such anthority evidence for the two readings is 

as that of Professors Wetteott and Hort balanced, and the inUmal evidence 

(* The N. T.' p. 212), I must strongly to me stronffly in favour of tb» 

repudiate the reading * Son of Man,' < Bon of GocL* 
instead of * Son of €k)d.' Admittedly, the 


Tim as the Son of God, because we have experience of Him as the chap. 
S-od-sent, Who has Divine Power, and has opened the eyes of the ix 
»Iind-bom — and Who has done to us what had never been done by ^ ' 
ny other in the world ? Thus is &ith always the child of ezpe- 
ienoe, and yet its f&ther also ; £edth not without experience, and yet 
>eyond experience ; faith not superseded by experience, but made 
easonable by it. 

To such a soul it needed only the directing Word of Christ. ^ And 
NTio is He, Lord, that I may believe on Him ? ' It seems as if 
he question of Jesus had kindled in him the conviction of what 
fBB the right answer. We almost see how, like a well of living 
rater, the words sprang gladsome firom his inmost heart, and how he 
ooked up expectant on Jesus. To such readiness of fiEdth there could 
>e only one answer. In language more plain than He had ever 
lefore used, Jesus answered, and with immediate confession of im- 
plicit £Euih the man lowly worshipped.' And so it was, that the first 
:JxQe he saw his Deliverer, it was to worship Him. It was the highest 
stage yet attained. What contrast this fiELith and worship of the 
poor, unlettered man, once blind, now in every sense seeing, to the 
blindness of judgment which had fsEillen on those who were the 
leaders of Israel ! The cause alike of the one and the other was 
the Person of the Christ. For our relationship to Him determines 
Bight or blindness, as we either receive the evidence of what He is 
bom what He indubitably does, or reject it, because we hold by our 
pwn false conceptions of God and of what His Will to us is. And so 
U Christ also for * judgment.' 

There were those who still followed Him — not convinced by, nor 

4IS yet decided against Him — Pharisees, who well understood the 

-Application of His Words. Formally, it had been a contest between 

traditionaliBm and the Work of Christ. They also were traditionalists 

— 'Were they also blind ? But, nay, they had misunderstood Him by 

^Wng out the moral element, thus showing themselves blind 

^i^deed. It was not the calamity of blindness ; but it was a blind- 

Bei8 in which they were guilty, and for which they were responsible, 

^Uch indeed was the result of their deliberate choice : therefore 

^dr ain — not their blindness only — remained ! 

* VMtff^o'ffy. The word is never 20 ; and twenty-three times in the Book 

^ by St. John of mere respect for man, of Revelation, bnt always in the sense of 

^^waysimpUesBivine worship. In the worship. 
^<Wit oocQZS ch. iv. 20-24 ; iz.S8 ; xii. 





(St. John X. 1-21.) 

BOOK The closing words which Jesus had spoken to those Pharisees who 
IV followed Him breathe the sadness of expected near judgment, rather 

"""^ than the hopefulness of expostulation. And the Discourse which fol- 
lowed, ere He once more left Jerusalem, is of the same character. It 
seems, as if Jesus could not part from the City in holy anger, bat 
ever, and only, with tears. All the topics of the former Discourses 
are now resumed and applied. They are not in any way softened or 
modified, but uttered in accents of loving sadness rather than of 
reproving monition. This connection with the past proves, that the 
Discourse was spoken immediately after, and in connection with, the 
events recorded in the previous chapters. At the same time, the 
tone adopted by Christ prepares us for His Persean Ministry, which 
may be described as that of the last and fullest outgoing of His most 
intense pity. This, in contrast to what was exhibited by the rulers 
of Israel, and which would so soon bring terrible judgment on then^-' 
For, if such things were done in * the green tree ' of Israel's Messiah-^ 
King, what would the end be in the dry wood of Israel's commoiL^ 
wealth and institutions ? 

It was in accordance with the character of the Discourse presently 
under consideration, that Jesus spake it, not, indeed, in Parables it^ 
the strict sense (for none such are recorded in the Fourth G-ospel^ 
but in an allegory ^ in the Parabolic form, hiding the higher truths 
from those who, having eyes, had not seen, but revealing them XC- 
such whose eyes had been opened. If the scenes of the last fev^ 
days had made anything plain, it was the utter unfitness of th^ 
teachers of Israel for their professed work of feeding the flock of God. 
The Babbinists also called their spiritual leaders * feeders,' PariMMtr^ 

^ The word is not parable, bnt irapoi/Ja, characteristics of the Parables, see 600*^ 
proverb or allegory. On the essential m. ch. xxiii. 


(l*Dno) — & t^fi™^ ^y wliich the Targnm renders some of the references 
to * the Shepherds' in Ezek. zxziv. and Zech. xi.' The term com- 
]HiBed the two ideas of ' leading ' and ' feeding,' which are separately 
insisted on in the Lord's allegory. As we think of it, no better 
illostration, nor more apt, could be found for those to whom * the 
Bock of Qod ' was entrusted. It needed not therefore that a sheep- 
fold ahoold have been in view,^ to explain the form (^ Christ's 
addres. It only required to recall the Old Testament language 
about the shepherding of God, and that of evil shepherds, to make 
the applicatioD to what had so lately happened. They were, surely, 
not shepherds, who had cast out the healed blind man, or who so 
jndged of the Christ, and would cast out all His disciples. They 
W entered into Grod's Sheepfold, but not by the door by which the 
oner, God, had brought His Sock into the fold. To it the entrance 
Iiadbeen His free love, Hia gracious provision, His thoughts of par- 
doning, His purpose of saving mercy. That was God's Old Tes- 
tament-door into His Sheepfold. Not by that door, as had so lately 
fo&y appeared, had Israel's rulers come in. They had climbed np to 
thrir place in the fold some other way — with the same right, or by 
the nme wrong, as a thief or a robber. They had wrongfully taken 
what did not belong to them — cunningly and undetected, like a thief ; 
tiiey had allotted it to themselves, and usurped it by violence, like a 
^'Aibei. What more accurate description could be given of the means 
I? which the Pharisees and Sadducees had attained the rule over 
Wb flock, and claimed it for themselves ? And what wa^ true of them 
holdg equally so of all, who, like them, enter by ' some other way.' 

How different He, Who comes in and leads us through God's door 
rf covenant-mercy and Gospel-promise — the door by which God had 
lnwght, and ever brings, His flock into His fold ! This was the true 
Sliepherd. The allegory must, of course, not be too closely pressed ; 
hot, u we remember how in the East the flocks are at night driven 
uito a large fold, and charge of them is given to an under-shepherd, 
■e can understand how, when the shepherd comes in the morning, 
'Ihe doorkeeper ' ' or ' guardian ' opens to him. In interpreting the 
>Ueg(Hy, stress must not be so much laid here on any single phrase, 
1* it the ' porter,' the ' door,' or the ' opening,' as on their combina- 
tia. If the shepherd comes to the door, the porter hastens to 
fen it to him &om within, that he may obtain access to the flock ; 

, ' th» figure at a ihepbard U fatnllUr deacon Wtatkiiu, ad loc. 

n Btbbiiiic m in Biblical literatnre. • Thia is the proper rcadiog : he whi> 

Co«^ Bemidb. B. 23 : Talknt i. p. 68 a. locked tbe door from withia and gnarded 

■ IbUla (he view advocated hj Aich- it. 


and when a trne gpiritnal Shepherd comes to the trae spiritnal door, 
it is opened to him by the guardian from within, that is, he finds 
ready and immediate access. Equally pictorial is the progress of the 
allegory. Having thus gained access to His flock, it has not been to 
steal or rob, but the Shepherd knows and calls each by his name 
and leads them out. And ' when He has put forth all His own,'' 
— 'put them fmih' — the word ie a strong one, for they have to 
go each singly, and perhaps they ai-e not willing to go out each 
by himself, or even to leave that fold, and so He ' puts ' or thnista 
them forth, and He does so to 'all His own.' Then the Eagteru 
shepherd places himself at the head of his flock, and goes before 
them, guiding them, making sure of their following simply by his 
voice, which they know. So would His flock follow Clirist, for thej 
know His Voice, and in vain would strangers seek to lead them 
away, as the Pharisees had tried. It was not the known Voice of 
their own Shepherd, and they would only flee from it. 

We can scarcely wonder, that they who heard it did not undei^ 
stand the allegory, for they were not of Hie flock and knew not Hi* 
Voice. But His own knew it then, and would know it for ever. 
' Therefore,' both for the sake of the one and the other. He con- 
tinned, now dividing for greater clearness the two leading ideas of 
His allegory, and applying each separately for better comfort. These 
two ideas were : entrance by the door, and the characteristics of the 
good Shepherd — thus affording a twofold test by which to reoogni* 
the true, and distinguish it from the false. 

I. The door. — Clirist was the Door. The entrance into God» 
fold and to God's flock was only through that, of which Christ *M 
the reality. And it had ever been so. All the Old Testament insti- 
tutions, prophecies, and promises, so far as they referred to acceis 
into God's fold, meant Christ. And all those who went before Him* 
pretending to be the door — whether Pharisees, Sadducees, or Nation- 
alists- — ^were only thieves and robbers : that was not the door into tie 
Kingdom of God. And the sheep, God's flock, did not hear them; 
for, although they might pretend to lead the flock, the voice wis 
that of strangers. The transition now to another application of 
the allegorical idea of the ' door ' was natural and almost necessary, 
though it appears somewhat abrupt. Even in this it is peculiarly 
Jewish. We must understand this transition as follows : I am the 
Door ; those who professed otherwise to gain access to the fold have 



cUmbed in some other way. Bat if I am the only, I am also truly chap. 
the Door. And, dropping the figure, if any man enters by Me, he x 
Bhall be saved, securely go out and in (where the language is not to ^^ 

be closely pressed), in the sense of having liberty and finding pasture. 
II. This forms also the trausitiou to the second leading idea of the 
allegory : the True, and Good Shepherd. Here we mark a fourfold 
prc^ression of thought, which reminds us of the poetry of the Book 
of Psalms. There the thought expressed in one line or one couplet 
is carried forward and developed in the next, forming what are called 
the Psalms of Ascent (' of Degrees '). And in the Discourse of Christ 
also the final thought of each couplet of verses is carried forward, 
at rather leads upward in the next. Thus we have here a Psalm of 
Degrees concerning the CK>od Shepherd and His Flock, and, at the 
same time, a New Testament version of Psalm xxiii. Its analysis 
might be formulated as follows ; — 

1. Chriat the Good Shepherd, in contrast to others who falsely 
daimed to be the shepherds. Their object had been self, and they 
had pursued it even at the cost of the sheep, of their life and safety. 

Be * came ' ' for them, to give, not to take, ' that they may have life 

and have abundance.' * 

'Zi/e,' — nay, that they may have it, / *lay down" Mine: so 
does it appear that ' I am the G-ood * Shepherd.' " 

2. l%e Good Shepherd Who layeth down Sis life for His sheep ! 
What a contrast to a mere hireling, whose are not the sheep, and 
ibo fleeth at sight of the wolf (danger), ' and the wolf seizeth them, 
ud Bcattereth (viz., the flock): (he fieeth) because he is a hireling, 
ud careth not for the sheep.' The simile of the wolf must not be 
^ closely pressed, bnt taken in a general sense, to point the contrast 
to Him ' Who layeth down His Life for His sheep.' * 

Traly He ia — is seen to be — ' the fair Shepherder,' ' Whose are the 
iheep, and as such, ' / know Mine, and Mine know Me, even as the 
'itlier knoweth Me, and I know the Father. And / lay down My 
**/« far the sheep' 

' Hot H in the A. Y., ' am cone.' view depends on a misanderataodiDg of 

' b Cuion Wttteatt TemukB, * this a 8eQt«Dce qnoted from Bab. Mez. 93 b. 

ptiUi to Kimethiiig more than Ufe.' As the cootezt shows, if a. abepherd lenves 

' lUi is the proper rendcriog. his Qock. and in his absence the wolf 

' UleiaUy ' U^.' As Canon Weitartt, comes, the shepherd is responsible, but 

*Ui hii nroal happiness, expresses it : only becanse he ongbt not to have left 

'>wtoilygoodinwardlj(l7aMt),bDtgood the flock, and his presence might hare 

*■ imeiTed (jnAJt).' prevented tho actddent. In esse of attack 

' Has would be all the more striking bj force ntphieure be is not responsible 

^ Kcoiding to Babtrinic law, a shep- for bis flock. 

wi WM n»t called upon to expose Ins < See an important note at the end of 

^n life for tbe safety of his flock, nor this chapter. 

tfoiaiblc in sadb a caae. The opposite ' See Note 4, 


3. For the ekeep that are Mine, whom / know, and for vfhorm^^/ 
lay dovm My Life I Bat those sheep, tfaey are not only * of t^^;^ 
fold,' not all of the Jewish * fold,' bat also scattered sheep of t:^ 
Oentiles. Thej have all the characteristics of the flock : they cuf 
His ; and they hear His Voice ; but as yet they are outside the fcdd 
Them also the Good Shepherd ' must lead,' and, in evidence that the^ 
are His, as He calls them and goes before them, they shall hear Sh 
Voice, and so, most glorious consummation, ' they shall become 
one flock ' and one Shepherd.' 

And thus is the great goal of the Old Testament reached, and *U>e 
good tidings of great joy' which issue irom Israel 'are unto all 
people.' The Kingdom of David, which is the Kingdom of God, ii 
set up upon earth, and opened to all believers. We cannot he^ 
noticing — though it almost seems to detract &om it — how diffirent 
^m the Jewish ideas of it is this Kingdom with its Shepherd-King, 
Who knows and Who lays down His Life for the sheep, and Who 
leads the Gentiles not to snbjection nor to inferiority, but to eqas% 
of &itb and privileges, taking the Jews out of their fold and leadilig 
up the Gentiles, and making of both * the flock.' Whence did Jesni 
of Nazareth obtain these thoughts and views, towering so &r aloft 
of all around? 

But, on the other hand, they are utterly un-Gentile also — if if 
the term * Gentile * we mean the ' Gentile Cbiuches,' in antagonissk 
to the Jewish Christians, as a certain school of critics would repre- 
sent them, which traces the origin of this Gospel to this sepuratioift' 
A Gospel written in that spirit would never have spoken on this wis^ 
of the mutual relation of Jews and Gentiles towards Christ and iM* 
the Church. The sublime words of Jesus are only compatible witA> 
one supposition : that He was indeed the Christ of Qod. THay-f 
although men have studied or cavilled at these words for eightee'" 
and a half centuries, they have not yet reached unto this ; * The^ 
shall become one flock, one Shepherd.' 
c. 4. In the final Step of 'Ascent" the leading thoughts of tb.* 
whole Discourse are taken up and carried to the last and highest 
thought. The Good Shepherd that hri/age together ike One Flods - 
Yes, by laying down His Life, but also by taking it up agsic^- 
Both are necessary for the work of the Good Shepherd — nay, tl»* 
life is laid down in the surrender of Gacrifice, in order that it may l^ 
taken np again, and much more fully, in the Besorreotion-Fow^' 
And, therefore, His Father loveth Him as the Messiah-Shepherd 

' Sot ' fold,' as in the A. V. 


Who so fnllj does the work committed to Him, and eo entirely em-- 
renders Himaelf to it. 

Hia Death, His Sestirrection — let no one imagine that it comes 
Grom without ! It is His own act. He has ' power ' In regard to both, 
and both are His own, voluntary, Sovereign, and Divine acts. 

And this, all this, in order to be the Shepherd-Sariour— to die, 
and rise for His Sheep, and thas to gather them aU, Jews and 
Gentiles, into one flock, and to be their Shepherd. This, neither 
more nor less, was the Mission which God 1^ given Him ; this, 
• the coTmna/tidTnent ' which He had received of His Father — that 
which, God had griven Him to do. 

It was a noble close of the series of those Discourses in the 
Temple, which had it for their object to show, that He was truly 
Bent of Ood. 

And, in a measure, they attained that object. To some, indeed, it 
all Beemed unintelligible, incoherent, madness; and they fell back 
on the favourite explanation of all this strange drama — He hath a 
demon 1 But others there were — let us hope, many, not yet His 
disciples — to whose hearts these words went straight. And how conid 
they resist the impression? 'These utterances are not of a demon- 
ised ' — and, then, it came back to them : ' Can a demon open the 
eyes of the blind ? ' 

And so, once again, the Light of His Words and of His Person 
fell upon His Works, and, as ever, revealed their character, and made 
them clear. 

Note. — It seems right here, in a kind of ' Postscript-Note,' to call atteu- 
'■(Q to wh&t coald not have been inserted in the text witliout breaking up 
'h onity, and yet seems too important to be relegated to an ordinary foot- 
note. In Yoma 66 6, lines 18 to 24 from top, we have a series of questions 
^drand to Rabbi Elieser ben Kyrcanos, designed — as it seems to me — to 
'^^ his views about Jesus and his relation to the nev doctrine. Babbi 
^eser, one of the greatest Rabbis, was the brother-in-law of Gamaliel II., 
^ son of that Gamaliel at whose feet Paul sat. He may, therefore, have 
^^^ acquainted with the Apostle. And we have indubitable evidence that 
°e ti^ interconrse with Jewish Christians, and took pleasure in their 
'**ching; and, farther, that he was accused of favonring Christianity. Under 
WC8B cirenmstances, the serieti of covered, enigmatic queetions, reported as 
*^dt«eBed to him, gains a new interest. I can only repeat, that I r^;ard 
'^•Hi as referring to the Person and the Words of Christ. One of tbew 
^"^Vtatnu ia to this effect : ' Is it [right, proper, duty] for the Shepherd to 
"^^Q a lamb from the lion } ' To this the Rabbi gives (as always in this 
'^'oa of qnestious} an evasive answer, as follows : ' You have only asked 
VoL.n, O 


me about the lamb.' Od this the followiug question ia next pnt, I p 
by way of forcmg an express reply : ' Is it [right, proper, duty] to a 
' f%epherd &om the lion 1 ' and to this the Babbi once more e 

' You havs only asked me about the Shepherd.' Thus, as the words -^^ 
Christ to which covert reference is made have only meaning irtien the t^i^v>^ 
ideas of the Sheep and the Shepherd are combined, the Babbi, by dividiM:^^ 
them, cleverly evaded giving an answer to his questioners. Bat thcM 5jrx- 
ferencee come to ub, all of deepest importance : 1. I regard the qnestio^i^ 
above quoted as containing a distinct reference to the words of Christ in Sc. 
John X. 11. Indeed, the whole string of questions, of which the abor^ 
form part, refers to Christ and TTiii Words. 2. It casts a peculiar ligbty 
not only upon the personal history of this great Babbi, the brother-in-lsW 
of the Patriarch Qftmaliel II., bat a side-light also on the history of 
Nicodemas. Of coarse, such evasive answers are utterly uaworthy of » 
disciple of Christ, and quite incompatible with the boldness of oonfencn. 
which characterised them. But the question arises — now often seriom^ 
discussed by Jewish writers : how iar many Babbis and laymen msy h&Tt 
gone in their belief of Christ, and yet — at least in too many insbuuM— 
fallen short of discipleship ; and, lastly, as to the relation between the Mrtf 
Church and the Jews, on which not a few things of deep interest have to 
be said, though it maj* not be on the present occasion. 3. Critically also, ikt 
quotation is of the deepest importance. For, does it not/umish a re/erenem 
— and that on the lips of Jews — to tJw Fourth Gospti, and that from A^ 
close of thi Jirtt century 1 There is here something which the opponents s^^ 
its genuineness and authenticity will have to meet and answer. 




(St. Matt. zii. 22-45 ; St. Luke li. 14-36.) 

Ii^ iras well that Jeeus should, for the present, have parted from cbap. 
J&XTjsalem with words like these. They would cling about His xi 
headers lite the odour of incense that had ascended. Even ' the ' ' 
setUBm ' that had come among them * concerning His Person made ■ at. John 
>t fjoenble not only to continue His Teaching, but to return to the 
City once more ere His final entrance. His Fersau Ministry, which 
ex**nded from after the Feast of Tabernacles to the week preceding 
tt»e last Passover, was, so to speak, cut in half by the brief risit of 
Jesus to Jemsalem at the Feast of the Dedication." Thus, each part '■si. John 
of the Persean Ministry would last about three months ; the first, 
from about the end of September to the month of December ; ■= the ' ^ .\.a. 
**oond, from that period to the beginning of April.'' Of these six " as >■"■ 
■months we have (with the solitary exception of St. Matthew xji. 22— 
*S^,' no other account than that furnished by St. Luke,* * although, as ' st. Lakg 
"^tially, the Jerusalem and Judeean incidents of it are described by '""-"i 
"*" John.' After that we have the account of His journey to the last ''■■ 
"^Bover, recorded, with more or less detail, in the three Synoptic »j 

It will be noticed that this section is peculiarly lacking in i/nd- 
'^^nt. It consists almost exclusively of Discourses and Parables, with 
°^t few narrative portions interspersed. And this, not only because 
^e geason of the year must have made itinerancy difficult, and thus 
^ve hindered the introduction to new scenes and of new persons, but 
***iefly frt)m the character of His Ministry in Perssa. We remember 
*^t, similarly, the beginning of Christ's Galilean Ministry had been 

' The reMOTu for his iDsertion of this * On the cbaract«ristic8 of this BectioD, 

^^ mist Im sought in tlie character of Canon Coot has some veiy iDterestuig 

<?** Diacoane and in the context in St. remarliB in the Speoket's Commentary, 

*«tUiew'» QMpeL N. T. vol. i. p, 378. 


BOOK cliiefly marked by Discourses and Parables. Besides, after what bs 
IV passed, and must now have been so well known, illustrative De^s= 
■ "" could scarcely have been bo requisite in Penea. In feet, His Pptjp— ^ 
was, substantially, a resumption of His early Galilean Ministry, otzalj 
modified and influenced by the much fuller knowledge of the peo^sij^ 
concerning Christ, and the greatly developed enmity of their leaden 
This accounts for the recurrence, although in fiiller, or else ui 
modified, form, of many things recorded in the earlier part of thw 
History. Thus, to begin with, we can understaud how He would, at 
this initial stage of His Perseau, as in that of His Galilean Ministay, 
repeat, when asked for instruction concerning prayer, those sacitd 
words ever since known as the Lord's Prayer. The variations are to 
slight as to be easily accounted for by the individuality of the reporter.' 
They afford, however, the occasion for remarking on the two prin- 
cipal differences. In St. Luke the prayer is for the forgiveness of 
' sins,' while St. Matthew uses the Hebraic term * debts,* which bu 
passed even into the Jewish Liturgy, denoting our guilt as indebted* 
ness (ij'nnin ■noz' ^d pino)- Again, the ' day by day ' of St. Lnke, 
which further explains the petition for ' daily bread,' common both to 
St. Matthew and St. Luke, may be illustrated by the beautiful Bab- 
binic teaching, that the Manna fell only for each day, in order that 
thought of their daily dependence might call forth constant feitb 

• YoiiaTfln, in our ' Father Which is in heaven.'" Another Rabbinic saying 
ttomuv^ places'* our nourishment on the same level with our redemption, as 
» ^coniiog regards the thanks due to God and the fact that both are day by 
™.vi. 3i. day." Yet a third Rabbinic saying * notes the peculiar manner in 

■ ikr. E. JO, which both nourishment and redemption are always mentioned ii* 
p.'3»6,ii£t Scripture (by reduplicated expressions), and how, while redemptio** 
' ^ B n ^"'^ place by an Angel,* nourishment is attributed directly to Go4- 

• GciLidriii. But to return. From the introductory expression ; 'When (o' 
'p«.ciiT i« ^'lien^ver) ye pray, say' — we venture to infer, that this prayer w^^ 

intended, not only as the model, but as furnishing the words forti** 
future use of the Church. Yet another suggestion may be mad^^ 
The request, ' Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his di ^ 

■ st-Lnks ciples,'* seems to indicate what was 'the certain place,' which, no"* 

consecrated by our Lord's prayer, became the school for ours. ^- 

■ The conclnding Doxology shoolfl be Speaker's Commenlaiy ad loc.) befi)^* 

omitted fiom S). Mattheic's report of the adopting the proposed klteratiotu. 

prayer. Ae regards the different readings ' The same page of the Tslmrid oot^ 

which have been adopted into the Revised tains, however, Home abrordlv prota^' 

Termon, the reader is advised to consnlt legends abont the manna. 
Canon Cnek'i judicions notes (in the 


BOOK t^t. Matthew and St. Liike, we mark that, as always, the Words cf 
*^' . the Lord are more fully reported by the former, while the latter 
I^J™"'- supplies some vivid pictorial touches,* The following are the lead- 
ijifcsii. ing featurea of Christ's reply to the Pharisaic charge : P'irst, It mu 
"SI, Mutt, utterly um'eaaonable," and inconsistent with their o^vn premisses,' 
*TT^°T-3o showing that their asicription of Satanic agency to what Chrigt did 
was only prompted by hostility to His Person. This mode of turn- 
ing the argument against the arguer was peculiarly Hebraic, and it 
does not imply any statement on the part of Christ, whether or ni* 
the disciples of the Pharisees really cast out demons. Mentally, vts 
must supply — according to your own professions, yonr disciples casb 
out demons. If so, by whom are they doing it? 

But, secondly, beneath this logical argumentation lies deep an^* 
spiritual instruction, closely connected with the late teaching durin^g 
the festive days in Jerusalem. It is directed against the flims^^. 
superstitious, and unspiritual views entertained by Israel, alike c::^ 
the Kingdom of evil and of that of God. P'or, if we ignore tt^e 
moral aspect of Satan and his kingdom, all degenerates into the afc::> 
surdities and superstitions of the Jewish view concerning demons Bcr«d 
Satan, which have been fully described in another place.' On tft=ie 
other hand, introduce the idea of moral evil, of the concentration *f 
ita power in a kingdom of which Satan is the representative axad 
ruler, and of our own inherent sinfulness, which makes us his ga^b- 
jects — and all becomes clear. Then, truly, can Satan not caat o«( 
Satan — else how could his kingdom stand ; then, also, is the cafitu^ 
out of Satan only by 'God's Spirit,' or 'Finger:' and this is tie 
Kingdom of God, Nay, by their own admission, the casting out rf 
'TiUkiUDD Satan was part of the work of Messiah.*" Then'had the Kingdont 
of God, indeed, come to them — for in this was the Ivingdom of Godj 
and He waa the God-sent Messiah, come not for the glory of Isisd^ 
nor for anything outward or intellectual, but to engage in mortal con- 
flict with moral eril, and with Satan as its rejiresentative. In tiat 
contest Christ, as the Stronger, bindetli ' the strong one,' spoils his 
house (divideth his spoil), and takes from him the arraour in which 
his strength lay (* he trusted') by taking away the power of sin. 
This is the work of the Messiah — and, therefore, no one can be 
indifferent towards Him, because all, being by nature in a certain 
relation towards Satan, must, since the Messiah had commenced His 

■ See the Appenilix on Angelology and ■ See Book 11. ch. v., and the Appendit 


Work, occupy a definite relationship towards the Christ Who combats chap. 
Satan.* xi 

It follows, that the work of the Christ is a moral contest waged 
through the Spirit of God, in which, from their position, all must 
take a part. But it is conceivable that a man may not only try to 
be passively, but even be actively on the enemy's side, and this not 
by merely speaking against the Christ, which might be the outcome 
of ignorance or unbelief, but by representing that as Satanic which 
was the object of His Coming. Such perversion of all that is highest 
and holiest, such opposition to, and denunciation of, the Holy Spirit 
as if He were the manifestation of Satan, represents sin in its abso- 
lute con>pleteness, and for which there can be no pardon, since the 
state of mind of which it is the outcome admits not the possibility 
of repentance, because its essence lies in this, to call that Satanic 
which is the very object of repentance. It were unduly to press the 
Words of Christ, to draw from them such inferences as, whether sins 
unforgiYen in this world might or might not be forgiven in the 
nexty since, manifestly, it was not the intention of Christ to teach 
on tliis subject. On the other hand. His Words seem to imply that, 
at least as regards this sin, there is no room for forgiveness in 
the other world. For, the expression is not Hhe age to come' 
(ma^ 1%ny), but, Hhe world to come' (mn D^iy> or, ^n«n KD^y), which, 
as we know, does not strictly refer to Messianic times, but to the future 
and eternal, as distinguished both from this world (ntn uh)v\ ^^^ from 
*the days of the Messiah ' (n^B^n nioO** tt^^^^ 

3. But this recognition of the spiritual, which was the opposite ▼oi. i. p. 287 
of the sin against the Holy Ghost, was, as Christ had so lately ex- 
plained in Jerusalem, only to be attained by spiritual kinship with it.^ xif^J^s?* 
The tree must be made good, if the fruit were to be good ; tree and 
froit would correspond to each other. How, then, could these Phari- 
sees < speak good things,' since the state of the heart determined 
speech and action ? Hence, a man would have to give an account 
^ven of every idle word, since, however trifling it might appear to 
^hers or to oneself, it was really the outcome of ' the heart,' and 
f*^^^ed the inner state. And thus, in reality, would a man's future 
^ judgment be determined by his words ; a conclusion the more 
^*exiin, when we remember its bearing on what His disciples on the 

^j. Tbe reason of the difference between ship is to the discHjples, here to the Person 
^ll^ and the somewhat similar passage, of the Christ. 
- ^nke iz. 60, is, that there the relation- 



one side, and the FhariseeH on the other, said concerning Christ and 
the Spirit of God. 

4. Both logically and morally the Worda of Christ were nn- 
answerahle ; and the Pharisees fell back on the old device of chal- 
leuging proof of His Divine Mission by some visible sign.' Bat thii 
was to avoid the appeal tt> the moral element which the Lord had 
made ; it was un attempt to shift the argument from the moral to 
the physical. It was the moral that was at fault, or rather, wanting 
ill them ; and no amount of physical evidence or demonstration could 
have supplied that. All the signs from heaven woidd not have nqh- 
plied the deep sense of sin and of the need for a mighty Bpiritnal 
deliverance,'' which alone would lead to the reception of the Saviaiir 
Christ, Hence, as under previous similar circumstances ,° He would 
offer them only one sign, that of Jonas the prophet. But whereu 
on the former occasion Christ chiefly referred to Jonas' preackvig 

( of repentance), on this He rather pointed to the allegorical kUtorf 
of Jonae as the Divine attestation of his Mission. As he appeared 
in "Nineveh, he was himself 'a sign unto the Ninevites ;'•* the fact 
that he had been three days and nights in the whale's belly, and 
that thence he had, so to speak, been sent forth alive to preach in 
Nineveh, was evidence to them that he had been sent of God. And 
so would it be again. After three days and three nights 'in the 
heart of the earth ' — which is a Hebraism for ' in the earth '' — ^wouU 
His ResurrectioD Divinely attest to this generation His MiraioS- 
The Ninevites did not (piesti<)n, but received this attestation w 
Jonas ; nay, an authentic report of the wisdom of Solomon had beeo 
anfficient to bring the Queen of Sheba from so far ; in the one case it 
was, because they felt their sin ; in the other, because she felt her juti 
of the better wisdom and longed after it. But these were the two 
elements wanting in the men of this generation; and so both Nineveh 
iiud the Queen of Sheba would stimd up, not only as mute witnesBes 
against, but to condemn, them. For, the great Eeality of which the 
preaching of Jonas had been only the type, and for which the wisdom 
of Solomon had been only the preparation, had been presented to 
them in Christ.' 

5. And so, having put aside this cavil, Jesus returned to His 
former teaching ' concerning the Kingdom of Satan and the power 

' Tliis U simpl; a Uebiaism of whicli, 
»3 Bimilor instanccB, may be qnoted, 
Eiod. XV. 8 C'lbe lieart of the sea'); 
Ueut. iv. 11 {'the heart of henven'); 
a Bsm. sviii. U ('the heart of the 

terebinth '). Hence I cannot agree iritli 
Dean Plumptre, that the expression 
' heart of the earth ' bears any lefeKuoa 
to Hades. 


of eril; only now with application, not, as before, to the individual, chap. 
bat, as prompted by a view of the imbelieving resistance of Israel, to Xl 
the Jewish commonwealth as a whole. Here, alao, it must be re- 
membered, that, as the words used by our Lord were allegorical and 
illustrative, they most not be too cloBcIy pressed. As compared with 
the other nations of the world, Israel was like a bouse &om which 
the demon of idolatry had gone out with all his attendants — really 
the * Beel-Szibbul ' whom they dreaded. And then the boose had 
been swept of all the foulness and nncleanness of idolatry, and ga^ 
aished with aU manner of Pharisaic adornments. But all this while 
the house was really left empty, God was not there ; the Stronger 
One, Who alone could have resisted the Strong One, held not rule 
in it. And so the demon returned to it again, to find the house 
*hence he had come out empty, swept and garnished indeed — but 
also empty aad defenceless. The folly of Israel lay in this, that they 
thought of only one demon — him of idolatry — Beel-Szibbul, with all 
bia foohiess. That was all very repulsive, and they had carefully 
removed it. But they knew that demons were only manifestations 
of demoniac power, and that there was a Kingdom of evil. So this 
bouse, swept of the foulness of heathenism and adorned with all the 
self-rigbteousDess of Pharisaism, but empty of God, would only be- 
come a better, more suitable, and more secure habitation of Satan ; 
because, from its cleanness and beauty, his presence and rule there 
as an evil spirit would never be suspected. So, to continue the 
iUnitiative language of Christ, he came back ' with seven other spirits 
more wicked than himself — pride, self-righteousness, unbelief, and 
the like, the number seven being general — and thus the last state — 
Intel without the foulness of gross idolatry and garnished with all 
the adornments of Pharisaic devotion to Uie study and practice of 
the Iaw — was really worse than had been the first with all its open 

6. Once more was the Disconrse interrupted, this time by a tmly 
Jensh incident. A woman in the crowd burst into exclamations 
aboat the blessedness of the Mother who had borne and nurtured 
*wh a Son.* The phraseology seems to have been not imcommon, ■«, tab 
anoe it is equally applied by the fiabbis to Moses,"" and even to a Kj,,„ni_B 
great Rabbi.' More striking, perhaps, is another Kabbinic ^mssage, ** 
in which Israel is described as breaking forth into these words on 
beholding the Messiah: 'Blessed the hour in which Messiah was 
created; blessed the womb whence He issued; blessed the gene- 


ration that sees Him ; blessed the eye that is wortliy to behoU 

And yet such praise must have beeo iieculiarly unwelcome to 
Christ, as being the exaltation of only His Human Personal excd- 
ience, intellectual or moral. It quite looked away from that which 
He would present : His Work and Mission as the Saviour, Hence 
it was, although from the opposite direction, as great a misunder- 
standiug as the Personal depreciation of the Pharisees. Or, to use 
another illustration, this praise of the Christ through His Virgia- 
Mother was as unacceptable and unsuitable as the depreciation of the 
Christ, which really, though unconsciously, underlay the loving cure 
of the Virgin-Mother when she would have arrested Him in Hit 
Work,* and which St. Matthew relates in this connection.'' Accorf- 
ingly, the answer in both cases ia substantially the same : to poat 
away from His merely Human Personality to His Work and Misaoi^ 
—in the one case : ' Whosoever shall do the Will of My Father WhiA 
is in heaven, the same is My brother, and sister, and mother;' i» 
the other : ' Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the Word of God 
and keep it.' ' 

7. And now the Discourse draws to a close '^ by a fresh applica- 
tion of what, in some other form or connection, Christ had taught «l 
■ the outset of His public Ministry in the ' Sermon on the Mount-'* 
Rightly to understand its present connection, we must pass over tie 
various interruptions of Christ's Discourse, and join this as the con- 
clusion to the previous part, which contained the main subject. This 
was, that spiritual knowledge presupposed spiritual kinship.* Here, 
as becomes the close of a Discourse, the same truth is practically 
applied in a more popular and plain, one might almost say realistic, 
manner. As here put, it is, that spiritual receptiveneas is everth* 
condition of spiritual reception. VTiat was the object, of lighting • 
lamp? Surely, that it may give light. But if so, no one wonl^ 
put it into a vault, nor under the bushel, but on the stand. Shonl*^ 
we then expect that God would light the spiritual lamp, if *- ] 
be put in a dark vault ? Or, to take an illustration of it from ti»-^ | 
eye, which, as regards the body, serves the same purpose as the lam ^^^ 
in a house. Does it not depend on the state of the eye whether 
not we have the sensation, enjoyment, and benefit of the light 

I For the full quotatii 
oh. r., and the Appendix to it. 

' See Book UI. ch. iiii. 

• In view of such teaching, it ■ 
Indeed diMcult to [uideTBtwid the cvlti 

Book n. of tbe Virgin — and 
tribnte to theeiclnsi 
which is so characteristic of 
' See above, page ISU 


Let US, therefore, take care, lest, by placing, as it were, the lamp 
in a vault, the hght in ub be really only darkness.' ' On the other 
band, if by means of a good eye the light is transmitted through the 
whole ^tem — if it is not turned into darkness, like a lamp that is 
pot into a vault or under a bushel, instead of being set up to spread 
light through the house — then shall we be wholly full of light. And 
this, finally, explains the reception or rejection of Christ: how, in 
the words of an Apostle, the same Gospel would be both a savour of 
life nnto life, and of death auto death. 

It was a blessed lesson with which to close His Biscourae, and 
one fall of light, if only they had not put it into the vault of their 
darkened hearts. Yet presently would it shine forth again, and give 
light to those whose eyes were opened to receive it ; for, according 
to tie Divine rule and spiritual order, to him that hath shall be 
given, and Irom him that hath not shall be taken away even that 
be hath. 

' In KBte measure like the demon who returned to find bU honae emptf, swept 




(St. Luke id. 37-6*.) 

Bitter as was tlie enmity of the Pharisaic party against Jesnifit 
had not yet so far spread, nor become so avowed, as in eveiy plw 
to supersede the ordinary rules of courtesy. It is thus tiat w 
explain the invitation of a Pharisee to the morning meal, which fin" 
Dished the occasion for the second recorded Perfean Discourse d 
Christ. Alike in substance and tone, it is a continuation of Hii 
former address to the Pharisees. And it is probably here inserted 
in order to mark the further development of Christ's anti-PharissH 
teaching. It is the last address to the Pharisees, recorded in tit 
Gospel of St. Luke.' A similar last appeal is recorded ia a mnci 
later portion of St. Matthew's Gospel," only that St. Luke report* 
that spoken in PcTsea, St. Matthew that made in Jerusalem. This msj 
also partly account for the similarity of language In the two Dieconiwb 
Not only were the circumstances parallel, but the language held tt 
the end •" may naturally have recurred to the writer, when reporting 
the last controversial Discourse in Percea. Thus it may well ha76 
been, that Christ said substantially the same things on both occasionBi 
and yet that, in the report of them, some of the later modes of e*" 
pression may have been transferred to the earlier occasion. Jioi 
because the later both represents and presents the fullest anti-PhaTt" 
saie Discourse of the Sariour, it will be better to postpone oilf 
analysis till we reach that period of His Life.' 

Some distinctive points, however, must here be noted. The i** 
marks already made wbl explain, how some time may have elapsea 
between this and the former Discourse, and that the expresaioi'* 
' .'Vnd as He spake ' must not be pressed as a mark of time (referrio^ 

I Even St. LuJte zi. *fi-47 U not an ' See the remarks on St. tnka ri- 

eincption. Christ, iadeed, often after- 39-62 in oar analfais of St. Matt niU' 

wnids answered their questions, bat this in chap, iv, of Book. T. 
is His last formal aildresa to tbe Pharisees. 


■JO the immediately preceding Disconrse), bat rather be regarded as 
indicatiiig the drcomstauces onder vhtch a Pharisee had bidden TTiin 
to the meal.' Indeed, ve can scarcely imagine that, immediately after 
mcb a charge of the Pharisees as that Jesus acted as the representa- 
tive of Beelzebul, and soch a reply on the part of Jesns, a Pharisee 
vonld have invited Him to a friendly meal, or that ' Lawyers,' or, to 
use a modem term, ' Canonists,' would have been present at it. How 
different their feeUngs were after they had heard Hib denunciations, 
appears &om the bitterness with which they afterwards sought to 
provoke Him into saying what might serve as ground for a criminal 
charge.* And there is absolutely no evidence that, as commentators * 
suggest, the invitation of the Pharisee had been hypocritically given, 
for the purpose of getting np an accusation against Christ. More 
than this, it seems entirely inconsistent with the unexpressed 
Bgtonishment of the Pharisee, when he saw Jesus sitting down to 
food without having first washed hands. Up to that moment, then, 
it voold seem that he had only regarded Kim as a celebrated Rabbi, 
thongh perhaps one who tanght atmnge things. 

But what makes it almost certain, that some time must have 
elapsed between this and the previous Discourse (or rather that, as 
we believe, the two events happened in different places), is, that the 
invitation of the Pharisee was to the ' moming-meal,' * We know 
that this took place early, immediately after the return from morning' 
prayers in the Synagogue.' It is, therefore, scarcely conceivable, that 
ill that is recorded in connection with the first Disconrse should have 
oceoired before this first meal. On the other hand, it may well have 
Ikcd, that what passed at the Pharisee's table may have some connec- 
tion with something that had occurred just before in the Synagogue, 
far we conjecture that it was the Sabbath-day, We infer this from 
the drcnmstance that the invitation was not to the principal meal, 
^lichen a Sabbath 'the lawyers ' (and, indeed, all householders) 
wi)nld,atleaBt ordinarily, have in their own homes.* We can picture to 
•"selves the scene. The week-day family-meal was simple enough, 
[ 'tether breakbst or dinner — the latter towards evening, although 
I Onoetimes also in the middle of the day, but always before actual 

i 'The eipreMioD 'one of the Law- ' n'^flB' nD, of which the German 

I ™'(Ter. 46) MemsW imply that there Morgmitrat is a literal rendering. To 

*^KTeral at table. take the first meal later In the day was 

Not 'to dine,' as Id the A. T. Al- deemed very dd wholesome : 'like throw- 

*»^ in later Greek the word ipiaror 
*** iMd tor prMidium, yet its origiaal 

•• Med tor prMidium, yet its oripnal ' On the sacrednesa of the duty of hos- 

■**aliip aa ■ Dreakfast ' seems fiied by pitality, see ' Sketchea of Jewish Social 
*■ Lolie zlT. 19, SptoToi' 1) ttirvm. Life,' pp. 17-49. 


BOOK darkness, in order, as it was expressed, that the sight of the dishes 

IV by daylight might excite the appetite.* The Babylonian Jews were 

• YooMiib content to make a meal without meat; not so the Palestinians.^ 
^Bezahico With the latter the favourite food was young meat : goats, lambs, 

calves. Beef was not so often used, and still more rarely fowls. Bread 
was regarded as the mainstay of life,^ without which no entertain- 
ment was considered as a meal. Indeed, in a sense it constituted 
the meal. For, the blessing was spoken over the bread, and this was 
supposed to cover all the rest of the food that followed, such as the 
meat, fish, or vegetables — in short, all that made up the dinner, but 
not the dessert. Similarly, the blessing spoken over the wine included* 

• Ber. 41 6 all othcr kinds of drink.® Otherwise it would have been necessaiyto 

pronounce a separate benediction over each different article eaten or 
drunk. He who neglected the prescribed benedictions was regarded 

• B«*. 35 a as if he had eaten of things dedicated to Grod,*^ since it was written: 

• ft. xxiv. 1 < The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof.' ® ^ Beautiful as this 

principle is, it degenerated into tedious questions of casuistry. Thus, 
if one kind of food was eaten as an addition to another, it was settled 
that the blessing should be spoken only over the principal kind. 
Again, there are elaborate disputations as to what should be regarded 
as fruit, and have the corresponding blessing, and how, for example, 
one blessing should be spoken over the leaves and blossom, and 
Ber 36 a another over the berries of the caper .^ Indeed, that bush gaye 
rise to a serious controversy between the Schools of Hillel and 
Shammai. Another series of elaborate discussions arose, as to what 
blessing should be used when a dish consisted of various ingredients^ 
some the product of the ecuth, others, like honey, derived from the 
animal world. Such and similar disquisitions, giving rise to endlesB 
argmnent and controversy, busied the minds of the Pharisees and 

Let us suppose the guests assembled. To such a moming-meaJ 
they would not be summoned by slaves, nor be received in 8uct» 
solemn state as at feasts. First, each would observe, as a religion^ 
rite, * the washing of hands.' Next, the head of the house woulcJ 
cut a piece from the whole loaf— on the Sabbath there were twO 
loaves — and speak the blessing.^ But this, only if the company la^ 

> As always in the East, there were dnty to speak a blessing over a driok cf^ 

many kinds of bakemeat,from the coarse water, if one was thirsty, Ber. i4 a, 
barley-bread or rice-cake to the finest ■ This, also, was matter of oontrc^ 

pastry. We read even of a kind of versy, bat the Babbis decided that tl*^ 

biscnit, imported from India (the Teritha, blessing must first be spoken, and ihe^ 

Ber. 37 &). the loaf cot (Ber. 39 b). 

' So rigid was this, that it was deemed 


at table, as at dinner. If they aat, as probably always at the early 
meal, each would speak the benediction for himself.* The same rule 
applied in regard to the wine. Jewish casuistry had it, that one • 
Itlessing suificed for the wine intended as part of the meal. If other 
-vine were brought in during the meal, then each one would have to 
say the blessing anew over it ; if after the meal (as was done on 
Sabbaths and feast-days, to prolong the feast by drinking), one of the 
company spoke the benediction for all. 

At the entertainment of this Pharisee, as indeed generally, our 
Lord omitted the prescribed ' washing of hands ' before the meal. 
But as this rite was in itself indifferent, He must have bad some 
definite object, which will he explained in the sequel. The extemal- 
ism of aU these practices will best appear fix>m the following account 
which the Talmud gives of * a feast.' '' As the guests enter, they sit ' 
down on chairs, and water is brought to them, with which they wash 
one hand. Into this the cup is taken, when each speaks the blessing 
over the wine partaken of before dinner. Presently they all lie 
down at table. Water is again brought them, with which they now 
wash both bands, preparatory to the meal, when the blessing is 
spoken over the bread, and then over the cup, by the chief person at 
the feast, or else by one selected by way of distinction. The com- 
pany respond by Amen, always supposing the benediction to have 
)xea spoken by an Israelite, not a heathen, slave, nor law-breaker. 
"Sot was it lawful to say it with an unlettered man, although it might 
)iesaidwithaGuthsan'(heretic,or else Samaritan), who was learned, • 
After dinner the crumbs, if any, are carefully gathered — hands are 
igain washed, and be who first had done so leads in the prayer of 
thrnksgiving. The formula in which he is to call on the rest to 
jun him, by repeating the prayers after him, is prescribed, and 
^ifieis according to the number of those present. The blessing and 
the Utanksgiving are allowed to be said not only in Hebrew, but in 
aiy other Iwignage.* 

In regard to the position of the guests, we know that the upper- 
"•wt seats were occupied by the Rabbis. The Talmud formulates it* • 
u> this manner : That the worthiest lies down first, on his left side, 
•nh his feet hanging down. If there are two ' cushions ' (divans), 
"IS itert worthiest lies at his feet; if there are three cushions, the 
'W irorthiest lies above the first (at his left), so that the chief 
P^fton is in the middle. The water before eating is first handed to 
"* mrthiest, and so in regard to the washing after meat. But if a 
"wy Urge number are present, you begin after dinner with the least 


BOOS worthy, till yon come to the last five, when the worthiest in Hf 
IV company washes his hands, and the other four after him.' TlJe 
' guests being thua arranged, the head of the boose, or the elue/" 

person at table, speaks the blessing,^ and then cats the bread. By 
some it was not deemed etiquette to begin till after he who lud 
said the prayer had done so, but this does not seem to have been the 
rule among the Palestinian Jews. Then, generally, the bread irai 
dipped into salt, or something salted, etiquette demanding tint 
where there were two they should wait one for the other, but not 
where there were three or more. 

This is not the place to famish what may be termed a list of 
•metiua at Jewish tables. In earlier times the meal was, no doubt, vei? 
simple. It became otherwise when intercourse with Rome, Greece, 
and the East made the people familiar with foreign Iniory, while 
commerce supplied its requirements. Indeed, it would scarcely t» 
possible to enumerate the various articles which seem to have been 
imported from different, and even distant, countries. 

To begin with : the wine was mixed with water, and, indeed, eocne 
thought that the benediction should not be pronounced till the 

• Ber. Wo water had been added to the wine." According to one statement, tm 
'HWd.u.j parts,'' according to another, three parts, of water were to be added 

• Pm. 108 » to the wine." Various vintages are mentioned : among them a red wine 

of Saron, and a black wine. Spiced wine was made with honey and 
pepper. Another mixture, chiefly used for invalids, consisted of old 
wine, water, and balsam ; yet another was ' wine of myrrh ; ' * we alw 
read of a wine in which capers had been soaked. To these we should 
add wine spiced, either with pepper, or with absinth ; and what ii 
described as vinegar, a cooling drink made either of grapes that hii 
not ripened, or of the lees. Besides these, palm-wine was also in oset 
Of foreign drinks, we read of wine from Ammon, and from the provisce 
Asia, the latter a kind of 'must 'boiled down. Wine in ice camefroiii 
the Lebanon; acertain kind of vinegar from Idums^a; beer from Medit 
and Babylon ; a barley-wine (zythoa) from Egypt. Finally, we on^t 
to mention Palestinian apple-eider, and the juice of other fruits. If 
we adopt the rendering of some, even hqueurs were known and used. 
Long as this catalogue is, that of the various articles of food, 
whether native or imported, would occupy a much larger space. Suffice 
it that, as regarded the various kinds of grain, meat, fish, and frniti, 

' Aocotdiug to Ber. 16 b, the order id 
Persia was Bomewbat different. 
* Tcaditlon aaciibeE this benediotion 


tfaer in their natoral state or preserved, it embraced dmost every- CHAP. 

ling known to the ancient vorld. At feasts there was an intro- xn 

ictory coarse, ixmsisting of appetising salted meat, or of some light 

ish. This was followed by the dinner itself, which finished with 

sBseit {ApkHaymon or terugivna), consisting of pickled olives, 

idishes and lettuce, and fruits, among which even preserved ginger 

■ran India is mentioned.' The most diverse and even strange state- 'P^'- ^'■ 

lento are made as to the healthiness, or the reverse, of certain articles i"*-^ 

f diet, especially vegetables. Fish was a fovonrite dish, and never 

anting at a Sabbath-meal. It was a sajring, that both salt and 

ater should be used at every meal, if health was to be preserved. 

ondimeots, such as mustard or pepper, were to be sparingly used, 

ery different were the meals of the poor. Locusts — fried in flour or 

oney, or preserved — required, according to the Talmud, no blessing, 

nee the animal was really among the curses of the land. Eggs 

ere a common article of food, and sold in the shops. Then there 

.-aa a milk-dish, into which people dipped their bread. Others, who 

rere better off, had a soup made of vegetables, especially onions, 

nd meat, while the very poor would satisfy the cravings of hunger 

rith bread and cheese, or bread and fruit, or some vegetables, such 

iS encumbers, lentUa, beans, peas, or onions. 

At meals the rules of etiquette were strictly observed, especially as 
legarded the sages. Indeed, there are added to the Talmud two 
lactates, one describing the general etiquette, the other that of 
' ages,' of which the title may be translated as * The Way of the 
World ' {Derech Erez), being a sort of code of good manners. Ac- 
Hading to some, it was not good breeding to speak while eating. 
Ihe learned and most honoured occupied not only the chief places, 
but were sometimes distinguished by a double portion. According 
to Jewish etiquette, a guest should conform in everything to his 
host, even though it were unpleasant. Although hospitaUty was the 
greatest and most prized social virtue, which, to use a Rabbinic ez- 
presaon, might midte every home a sanctuary and every table an 
*1W, an unbidden guest, or a guest who brought another guest, was 
I*t>Terbia]ly an unwelcome apparition. Sometimes, by way of self- 
"Skteousness, the poor were brought in, and the best part of the 
■"^ ostentatiously given to them. At ordinary entertainments, 
^"^ were to help themselves. It was not considered good man- 
"^ to drink as soon as you were asked, but you ought to hold the 
■^P for a little in your hand. But it would be the height of rudeness, 
^^ to wipe the plates, to scrape together the bread, as though you 


BOOK ^^ ^ot had enongh to eat, or to drop it, to the iacoavenieaee of 
TV joxa neighbour. If a piece were taken out of a dish, it must of 

' ' ' course not be put back j still less muBt you offer from your cup a 
plate to your neighbour. From the almost religions value attacbin; 
to bread, we scarcely wonder that these rules were laid down : not to 
steady a cup or plate upon bread, nor to throw away bread, and tbit 
after dinner the bread was to be carefully swept together. Other- 
wise, it waa thought, demons would ait upon it. The ' Way of tie 

iSJallft World ' for Sages," lays down these as the marks of a RabM : thathe 

T.udTU. does not eat standing ; that he does not lick his fingers ; thatheitU 
down only beside his equals — in fact, many regarded it as wrong toeai 
with the unlearned; that he begins cutting the bread where it is bat 
baked, nor ever breaks off a bit with his hand ; and that, when drink- 
ing, he turns away his face from the company. Another saying no, 
that the sage was known by four things : at his cups, in money mit- 

>&iib.Mfr ters, when angry, and in his jokes.'' After dinner, the fonnalitiM 
concerning handwashing and prayer, already described, were gone 
through, and then frequently aromatic spices burnt, over which a 
special benediction was pronounced. We have only to add, thatoa 
•Sabbaths it was deemed a religious duty to have three meals, and to 
procure the best that money could obtain, even though one were to 
save and fast for it all the week. Lastly, it was regarded as a specuJ 
obligation and honour to entertain sages. 

We have no difficulty now in understanding what passed at tbe 
table of the Pharisee. When the water for purification was presested 
to Him, Jesus would either refuse it ; or if, as seems more likely at > 
morning-meal, each guest repaired by himself for the prescribed 
purification, He would omit to do so, and sit down to meat withort 
this formality. No one, who knows the stress which Pharisaism liid 
on this rite would argue that Jesus might have conformed to tl» 
practice.' Indeed, the controversy was long and bitter between fh® 
Schools of Shammai and Hillel, on such a point as whether the 
hands were to be washed before the cup was filled with wine, or (^/IC* 
that, and where the towel was to be deposited. With such thing* 
• Bcr.Hft the most serious ritual inferences were connected on bot^ sidee.^ 
A religion which spent its energy on such trivialities must hftv^ 
lowered the moral tone. All the more that Jesus insisted k^ 
earnestly, as the substance of His teaching, on that corruptitHi o^ 
our nature which Judaism ignored, and on that spiritual purifieatioi*- 

■ For a full account of the laws con- views entertained of therite.iMBotAllC'' 
cemiDg the washing of hands, and the ch. zzxi. 


vUch was needfal for the reception of His doctrine, would He publicly 
SDd openly set aside ordinauces of man which diverted thoughts of 
pnrit; into questions of the most childish character. On the other 
hand, we can also understand what bitter thoughts must have filled 
the mind d the Pharisee, whose guest Jesus was, when he observed 
Hia neglect of the cherished rite. It was an insult to himself, a 
defiance of Jewish Iaw, a revolt against the most cherished tiadi- 
tiona of the Synagogue. Remembering that a Pharisee ought not 
to ait down to a meal with such, he might feel that he should not 
have asked Jesus to his table. All this, as weU as the terrible con- 
trast between the punctiliousness of Pharisaism in outward purifica- 
tions, and the inward defilement which it never sought to remove, 
must have lain open before Him Who read the inmost secrets of the 
heart, and kindled His holy wrath. Probably taking occasion (as 
previously suggested) &om something that had passed before, He 
spoke with the point and emphasis which a last appeal to Pharisaism 

What our Lord said on that occasion will be considered in detail 
in another place.' Su£Bce it here to mark, that He first exposed the 
mere eztemalism of the Pharisaic law of purification, to the utter 
ignoring of the higher need of inward purity, which lay at the fouud- 
ation of all.' If the primary origin of the ordinance was to prevent • 
the eating of sacred offerings in defilement,* were these outward 
oSerings not a symbol of the inward sacrifice, and was there not an 
inward defilement as well as the outward ? '' To consecrate what we " 
lad to God in His poor, instead of selfishly enjoying it, would not, 
indeed, be a purification of them (for such was not needed), but it 
vould, in the truest sense, be to eat God's oSeriogs in cleanness. ' ° 
Ve mark here a progress and a development, as compared with the 
ioaaet occasion when Jesus had publicly spoken on the same sub- ' 
jot,* Formerly, He had treated the ordinance of the Elders as a 
cutter not binding ; now. He showed how this extemalism militated 
•gaingt thoughts of the internal and spiritual. Formerly, He had 
"'■'mi how traditionalism came into conflict with the written Law of 
™A; now, how it superseded the first principles which underlay 
itat law. Formerly, He had laid down the principle that defile- 
"lent came not from without inwards, but from within outwards ; • • 
""*) He unfolded this highest principle that higher consecration 
"Sputed parity. 

n with St. Matt.zziii. 

e Book m. ch. xixl. 


The same principle, indeed, would apply to other things, sncSi u 
to the Rabbinic law of tithing. At the same time it may have beei^ 
aa already enggeeted, that Bomething which had previously takes plao^ 
or was the sabject of conversation at table, had given oooasion for tlie 
further remarks of Christ.' Thus, the Pharisee may have wished to 
convey his rebuke of Christ by referring to the snbj ect of tithing. And 
snch covert mode of rebnking was very common among the Jews. It 
was regarded as ntterly defiling to eat of that which had not been 
tithed. Indeed, the three distinctions of a Pharisee were : > not to 
make use nor to partake of anything that had not been tithed; to 
observe the laws of purification ; and, as a con&eqnence of these two, bi 
abstain from ^miliar intercourse with all non-Pharisees. This eepu^ 
ation formed the ground of their claim to distinction." It will Im 
noticed that it is exactly to these three things our Lord adverts i n 
that these sayings of His are not, as might eeem, unconnected, but in 
the strictest internal relationship. Our Lord shows how Pharisaism, u 
regarded the outer, was connected with the opposite tendency as re- 
garded the inner man : outward purification with ignorance of the need 
of that inward purity, which consisted in God-consecration, and with 
the neglect of it ; strictness of outward tithing with ignorance and 
neglect of the principle which underlay it, viz., the acknowledgmeit 
of God's right over mind and heart (judgment and the love of God); 
while, lastly, the Pharisaic pretence of separation, and consequent 
claim to distinction, issued only in pride and self-assertion. Thoa, 
tried by its own tests, Pharisaism ' terribly failed. It was hypooi^i 
although that word was not mentioned till afterwards ; °* and tltft 
both negatively and positively : the concealment of what it was, md 
the pretension to what it was not. And the Pharisaism which p(^ 
tended to the highest purity, was, really, the greatest impurity — tlK 
defilement of graves, only covered up, not to be seen of men ! 

It was at this point that one of ' the Scribes ' at table broke in- 
Eemembering in what contempt some of the learned held the ig»** 
rant bigotry of the Pharisees,* we can understand that he might htve 
listened with secret enjoyment to denunciations of their ' folly.' A* 
the common saying had it, ' the silly pietist,' ' a woman Fhariwer 
and the (self-inflicted) * blows of Pharisaism,' were among the pbgne^' 

' On ' the Ptuui'ieeB, Baddocees, and aod Pharisees, hTpocritea,' tie an EnKr"^ 

Bwenei,' see Book III. cb. ii. In fact, polation. 

the fiateroily of the Phariseea were ' See previons Note. 

boimd hj these two tows, that of * As to the estimate of the Pha ill W ^ 

tithing, and that in regaid to pnrifica- comp. also 'Sketches of Jewish 8od»— ^ 

tioni. Life.' p. 237. 

* fit. Lake xi. 44. The wotds ' Bcribea 


of life.* And we cannot help feeling, that there is sometimes a touch chap. 
of quiet humour in the accounts which the Babbis give of the en- xii 
counters between the Pharisees and their opponents.^ But, as the •sotki 
Scribe rightly remarked, by attacking, not merely their practice, but 
their principles, the whole system of traditionalism, which they repre- 
sented, was condemned.^ And so the Lord assuredly meant it. The ^^*;/^''® 
^ Scribes ' were the exponents of the traditional law : those who bound 
and loosed in Israel. They did bind on heavy burdens, but they never 
loosed one ; all these grievous burdens of traditionalism they laid on 
the poor people, but not the slightest effort did they make to remove 
any of them.® Tradition, yes ! the very profession of it bore witness • ▼«. 46 
against them. Tradition, the ordinances that had come down — they 
would not reform nor put aside anything, but claim and proclaim all 
that had come down from the fathers as a sacred inheritance to which 
they clung. So be it f let them be judged by their own words. The 
fEttliers had murdered the prophets, and they built their sepulchres ; 
that, also, was a tradition — ^that of guilt which would be avenged. 
Tradition, learning, exclusiveness — alas ! it was only taking away 
from the poor the key of knowledge; and while they themselves 
entered not by * the door ' into the Kingdom, they hindered those 
who would have gone in. And truly so did they prove that theirs 
was the inheritance, the * tradition,' of guilt in hindering and 
hanishing the Divine teaching of old, and murdering its Divine 

There was terrible truth and solemnity in what Jesus spake, and 
in the Woe which He denounced on them. The history of the next 
few months would bear witness how truly they had taken upon them 
this tradition of guilt ; and all the after-history of Israel shows how 
Wly this * Woe ' has come upon them. But, after such denuncia- 
tions, the entertainment in the Pharisee's house must have been 
l^ken up. The Christ was too terribly in earnest — too moumfally 
^ over those whom they hindered from entering the Kingdom, to 
"^^ with the awful guilt of their trivialities. With what feelings 
^®y parted from Him, appears from the sequel. 

* And when He was come out from thence, the Scribes and the 
"^^^^^iiisees began to press upon Him vehemently, and to provoke Him 
^ ^peak of many things ; laying wait for Him, to catch something 
^t of His Mouth." 

, Bee preTioQB Note. 
^, ^luB is both the correct reading and rendering of St. Lnke zi. 63, 54, as given in 
^ ^eriaed Version. 




(Bt. Lnlce xii. l--xiii. 17.) 

The record of Chiist's last wsming to the PbariBeeB, and (A the 
feelings of morderoos hate which it called forth, is followed by * 
snnmiarj of Christ's teaching to His dlBciples. The tone is etiB 
that of warning, but entirely different from that to the Fhariflee(> 
It is a warning of »in that threatened, not oijvdgment that awaited; 
it was for prevention, not in denunciation. That each vaminga woe 
most seasonable, requires scarcely proof. They were prompted tf 
circumstances around. The same teaching, because prompted by tlie 
same causes, had been mostly delivered, also, on other occasions 
Yet there are notable, though seemingly alight, divergences, so- 
counted for by the difference of the writers or of the circumstancea, 
and which mark the independence of the narratives. 

I. The first of these Discourses* naturally connects itself iritli 
what had parsed at the Pharisee's table, an account of which must 
soon have spread. Although the liord is reported as having ad- 
dressed the same language chiefly to the Twelve when sending theffi 
- on their firet Mission,^' we shall presently mark several chaiacterigbe 
variations. The address — or so much of it as is reported, probably 
only its summary — is introduced by the following notice of the cir- 
cumstances : ' In the mean time, when the many thousands of tli0 
people were gathered together, so that they trode upon each o'Cnff* 
He began to say to His disciples ; " First [above all, nSnna]** bewaiff 
of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy." ' There is no need 
to point oat the connection between this warning and the deniut- 
ciation of Pharisaism and traditionalism at the Pharisee's table. 
Although the word * hypocrisy ' had not been spoken there, it was tiie 

' With St. Lake lii. 2-9, oomp. St. 18-20. 

Matt. z. 26-33 ; with St, Luke zii. 10, ' I prefer tbii rendering to thmt which 

comp. St Matt. zii. 31, 32; and with connectsthewoid 'firsfMama^ofUfflB 

St. Lake zii. 11, 12, comp. St Matt. z. with the prerioiu words. 


-iim and substance of His contention, that Pharisaism, while pre- (Uav. 
tending to what it was not, concealed what it was. And it was this xui 
which, like * leaven,' pervaded the whole system of Pharisaism. Not 
that as individuals they were all hypocrites, but that the system 
was hypocrisy. And here it is characteristic of Pharisaism, that 
Rabbinic Hebrew has not even a word equivalent to the term . 
* hypocrisy.' The only expression used refers either to flattery of, or 
pretence before, men,^ not to that unconscious hypocrisy towards God 
which our Lord so truly describes as * the leaven ' that pervaded all 
the Pharisees said and did. It is against this that He warned His 
disciples — and in this, rather than conscious deception, pretence, or 
flattery, lies the danger of the Church. Our common term, ^un- 
reality,* but partially describes it. Its full meaning can only be 
{[athered from Christ's teaching. But what precise term He may 
have used, it is impossible to suggest.' 

After aU, hypocrisy was only self-deception.* * But,' there is • stj^Loke 
nothing covered that shall not be revealed.' Hence, what they had 
said in the darkness would be revealed, and what they had spoken 
about in the store-rooms would be proclaimed on the housetops. 
Kor should fear influence them.*' Fear of whom ? Man could only ^ ▼«. 4 
kill the body, but God held body and soul. And, as fear was foolish, 
so was it needless in view of that wondrous Providence which watched 
over even the meanest of God's creatures.*^ Bather let them, in the « ▼▼. e, 7 
impending struggle with the powers of this world, rise to conscious- 
ness of its full import — how earth's voices would find their echo in 
lieaven. And then this struggle, what was it ? Not only opposition 
to Christ, but, in its inmost essence, blasphemy against the Holy 
Ghost. Therefore, to succumb in that contest, implied the deepest 
Bpiritiial danger.* Nay, but let them not be apprehensive ; their * ▼>-. s-10 
^knowledgment would be not only in the future ; even now, in the 
'^^ of their danger, would the Holy Ghost help them, and give 
^hem an answer before their accusers and judges, whoever they might 
"^^ews or Gentiles. Thus, if they fell victims, it would be with 
^ knowledge — not by neglect — of their Father ; here, there, every- 
*nere — ^in their own hearts, before the Angels, before men, would He 
P^ testimony for those who were His witnesses.* • ▼▼. 11, » 

Before proceeding, we briefly mark the differences between this 
•^ the previous kindred address of Christ, when sending the 


' WUiuehe goes too far in saying that ^ The Peshito paraphrases it. 
Vt\ lod nfil^n are only used in the sense * Thus, and not * for,* as in the A. V . 
^ ^Uttering. See X^ry, sab verb. 


BOOK Apostles on their Mission.* There (after certain personal directions)^ 

IV the Discourse began ^ with what it here doses. There it was in tibe 

• St. Matt. z. form of warning prediction, here in that of comforting reassurance; 
i£«?'*'''^ there it was near the beginning, here near the close, of His Ministzy^ 

Again, as addressed to the Twelve on their Mission, it was followed 
jstjMatt-* by personal directions and consolations,® and then, transition wa» 
made to the admonition to dismiss fear, and to speak out puldidy 
what had been told them privately. On the other hand, whoi 
addressing His Persean disciples, while the same admonition is given, 
and partly on the same grounds, yet, as spoken to disciples rather 
than to preachers, the reference to Christ's similar fate is omitted, 
while, to show the real character of the struggle, an admonition i» 
added, which in His Galilean Ministry was given in another connec- 
«8t.^Luke tion.* Lastly, whereas the Twelve were admonished not to fear, 
8t."Mktt* riL *^^' therefore, to speak openly what they had learned privately, the 
'^* '3 Persean disciples are forewarned that, although what they had spoken 

together in secret would be dragged into the light of greatest pub- 
licity, yet they were not to be afraid of the possible consequences to 

2. The second Discourse recorded in this connection was occa- 
sioned by a request for judicial interposition on the part of Christ. 

• St Luke This He answered by a Parable,* which will be explained in con- 

junction with the other Parables of that period. The outcome of 
this Parable, as to the utter uncertainty of this life, and the conae- 
quent folly of being so careful for this world while neglectful of 

f 8t LuJc2 God, led Him to make warning application to His Peraean disciples/ 
Only here the negative injunction that preceded the Parabley 
* beware of covetousness,' is, when addressed to * the disciples,' cai^ 
ried back to its positive underlying principle : to dismiss all anxiety^ 
even for the necessaries of life, learning from the birds and th© 
flowers to have absolute faith and trust in God, and to labour fcf 
only one thing — the Kingdom of God. But, even in this, they were 
not to be careful, but to have absolute faith and trust in their 

« St. Luke Father, * Who was well pleased to give ' them * the Kingdom.'* 

With but slight variations the Lord had used the same language, 
even as the same admonition had been needed, at the beginning of 

»8t.Matt. His Galilean Ministry, in the Sermon on the Mount.** Perhaps 
we may here, also, regard the allusion to the springing flowers as 
a mark of time. Only, whereas in Galilee this would mark the 
beginning of spring, it would, in the more favoured climate of car- 
tain parts of Peraea, indicate the beginning of December, about the 


time of the Venst of the Dedication of the Temj)le. ]\Iore iuiportant, chap. 
perhaps, is it to note, that the expression * rendered in the Autho- xiii 
rised and Kevised Versions, * neither be ye of doubtful mind,' means, •stLuice^ 
* neither be ye uplifted,' in the sense of not aiming, or seeking after '^ '* 
great things.^ This rendering of the Greek word {fisrscopi^siv) is »»comp.jcr. 
in accordance with its uniform use in the LXX.,* and in the Apo- 
oypha; while, on the other hand, it occurs in Joaephus and PhUoj in 
the sense of * being of a doubtful mind.' But the context shows, 
that the term must refer to the disciples coveting great things, since 
only to this the remark could apply, that the Gentile world sought 
Boeh things, but that our Father knew what was really needful 
tor 118. 

Of deepest importance is the final consolation, to dismiss all care 
Bad anxiety, since the Father was pleased to give to this < little flock ' 
the Kingdom. The expression ^ flock' carries us back to the lan- 
guage which Jesus had held ere parting from Jerusalem.® Hence- « st Jobn & 
forth this designation would mark His people. Even its occurrence 
fixes this Discourse as not a repetition of that which St. Matthew 
bad formerly reported, but as spoken after the Jerusalem visit. It 
demgnates Christ's people in distinction to their ecclesiastical (or 
OQtwiid) organisation in a ^ fold,' and marks alike their individuality 
and their conjunction, their need and dependence, and their relation 
to Him as the * Good Shepherd.' Small and despised though it be 
in the eyes of men, * the little flock ' is unspeakably noble, and rich 
in the gift of the Father. 

These admonitions, alike as against covetousness, and as to abso- 
lute trust and a self-surrender to God, which would count all loss for 
the Kingdom, are finally shown in their present application, and in 
^Wr ultimate and permanent principle, in what we regard as the 
^^O'ichiding part of this Discourse.* Its first sentence : * Sell that ye «» st. Luke 
1^^ and give alms,' which is only recorded by St. Luke, indicates 
^ t general principle, but its application to that particular period, 
^hen the fEuthful disciple required to follow the Lord, unencumbered 
V worldly cares or possessions.^ The general principle underlying • oomp. 
^ i» that expressed by St. Paul,' and finally resolves itself into this : xix. 21 
^ the Christian should have as not holding, and use what he has [^ g^'- ^**- 
•** for self nor sin, but for necessity. This conclusion of Christ's 

^^'•ootirse, also, confirms the inference that it was delivered near the 

^ ^ word oocnn in that sense twenty- times in the Apocrypha (twioe as a verb 

*^ timn in the T.TIC. of the Old Testa- and as an adjective, and three times as a 

^^ (four times as a noon, thirteen as noon). This, as against Dean Plwnptre, 

*^ >djeetiTe, eight as a verb), and seven must fix the N. T. uius. 




• St Mact. 
tL 19^21 


•TV. 86-38 

-« St Matt 
ZXiT. 43, 44 

terrible time of the end. Most seasonable here would be the repeti- 
tion — though in slightly diflferent language — of an admonition, givea 
in the beginning of Christ's Gralilean Ministry,* to provide treasure 
in heaven, which could neither &il nor be taken away ; for, assoiedly, 
where the treasure was, there would the heart be also. 

3. Closely connected with, and yet quite distinct firom, the pre- 
vious Discourse is that about the waiting attitude of the discdpleB 
in regard to their Master. Wholly detached from the things of the 
world, their hearts set on the Kingdom, only one thing should seem 
worthy their whole attention, and engage all their thoughts and 
energies : their Master ! He was away at some joyous feast, and the 
uncertainty of the hour of His return must not lead the servants to 
indulge in surfeiting, nor to lie down in idleness, but to be fidthfiil 
to their trust, and eagerly expectant of their Master. The Disconne 
itself consists of three parts and a practical application. 

1. The Disciples as Servants in the absence of their Master:^ 
their duty and their reward.^ This part, containing what would be 
so needful to these Persean disciples, is peculiar to St. Luke. The 
Master is supposed to be absent, at a wedding — a figure which must 
not be closely pressed, not being one of the essentials in the Parable. 
At most, it points to a joyous occasion, and its mention may chiefly 
indicate that such a feast might be protracted, so that the exact time 
of the Master's return could not be known to the servants who waited 
at home. In these circumstances, they should hold themselves in 
readiness, that, whatever hour it might be, they should be able to 
open the door at the first knocking. Such eagerness and devotion of 
service would naturally meet its reward, and the Master would, in 
turn, consult the comfort of those who had not allowed themselves 
their evening-meal, nor lain down, but watched for His return. 
Himgry and weary as they were from their zeal for Him, H^ 
would now, in turn, minister to their personal comfort. And this 
applied to servants who so watched — it mattered not how long> 
whether into the* second or the third of the watches into which th^ 
night was divided.* 

The * Parable ' now passes into another aspect of the case, wlndi> 
is again referred to in the last Discourses of Christ.* Conversely— 
suppose the other case, of people sleeping : the house might be 

* The first would not be mentioned, 
becanse it was so early, nor the fourth, 
because the feast would scarcely be pro- 
tracted thus far. Anciently, the Hebrews 
counted three night-watches ; but after- 

wards, and probably at the time of Chiteti 
they divided the night into fmr watdbei 
(see the discussion in Ber. 3 a). The 
latter arrangement was probably intro- 
duced from the Romans. 


]]roken into. Of course, if one had known the hour when the thief chap. 
wonld come, sleep would not have been indulged in ; but it is just this xni 
uncertainty and suddenness — and the Coming of the Christ into His " " 
Kingdom would be equally sudden — which should keep the people in 
the house ever on their watch till Christ came.* !dL*39^ 

It was at this particular point that a question of Peter interrupted 
the Discourse of Christ. To whom did this * Parable ' apply about 
^ the good man ' and ^ the servants ' who were to watch : to the Apostles, 
or also to all ? From the implied — for it is not an express — answer 
of the Lord, we infer, that Peter expected some difference between 
the Apostles and the rest of the disciples, whether as regarded the 
4ittitade of the servants that waited, or the reward. From the words of 
Christ the former seems the more likely. We can understand how 
Peter might entertain the Jewish notion, that the Apostles would 
come with the Master from the marriage-supper, rather than wait for 
His return, and work. while waiting. It is to this that the reply of 
Christ refers. If the Apostles or others are rulers, it is as stewardSy 
and their reward of fidthful and wise stewardship will be advance to 
higher administration. But as stewards they are servants — servants 
of Christ, and ministering servants in regard to the other and general 
servants. What becomes them in this twofold capacity is faithful- 
ness to the absent, yet ever near. Lord, and to their work, avoiding, 
on the one hand, the masterfulness of pride and of harshness, and, on 
the other, the self-degradation of conformity to evil manners, either of 
which would entaU sudden and condign punishment in the sudden 
and righteous reckoning at His appearing. The * Parable,' there- 
fore, alike as to the waiting and the reckoning, applied to work for 
Qirist, as well as to personal relationship towards Him. 

Thus far this solemn warning naturally would, as equally needful, 
°® afterwards repeated in Christ's Last Discourses in Judaea, in view of 
^ near departure.^ But in this Peraean Discourse, as reported by »» st. Luke 

Qf -r y Jr ^ xiL 48-46; 

^^ -Luke, there now follows what must be regarded, not, indeed, as a comp. 

^^'^er answer to Peter's inquiry, but as specifically referring to the xxiv. 45^1 
8|^^eral question of the relation between special work and general 
^^^pleship which had been raised. For, in one sense, all disciples are 
^^^ants, not only to wait, but to work. As regarded those who, like the 
P^fessed stewards or labourers, knew their work, but neither * made 
^*^y,' * nor did according to His Will, their punishment and loss 
ywhere the illustrative figure of * many ' and * few stripes ' must not 
^ too closely pressed) would naturally be greater than that of them 

» SoUterally. 





zU. 47, 40 


• TV. 49, 00 

•St. Matt X. 

• St. Luke 
xU. 51-63 

f Ter. 64 

c St. ICatt. 
ztLS, 3 

^ St. Luke 

who knew not — though this also involves guilt — ^that their Lord had 
any will towards them, that is, any work for them. This, according 
to a well-understood principle, universally, almost instinctively, acted 
upon among men.* 

2. In the absence of their Master ! A period this of workj u 
well as of waiting ; a period of trial cUao.^ Here, also, the two 
opening verses, in their evident connection with the subject-matter 
under the first head of this Discourse,' but especially with the dosing 
sentences about work for the Master, are peculiar to St. Luke's nam- 
tive, and fit only into it. The Church had a work to do in His 
absence — the work for which He had come. He * came to cast fire cm 
earth,' — that fire which was kindled when the Bisen Saviour sent the 
Holy Ghost, and of which the tongues of fire were the symbol.* Oh, 
how He longed,' that it were already kindled ! But between Him and 
it lay the cold flood of His Passion, the terrible waves in which He itf 
to be baptized. Oh, how He felt the burden of that coming Agony!* 
That fire must they spread : this was the work in which, as disdideSy 
each one must take part. Again, in that Baptismal Agony of His thej 
must also be prepared to share. It was fire : burning up, as well » 
purifying and giving light. And here was it in place to repeat to Hfc 
Peraean disciples the prediction already addressed to the Twelve when 
going on their Mission,* as to the certain and necessary trials con- 
nected with carrying ^ the fire' which Christ had cast on earth, even 
to the burning up of the closest bonds of association and kinship.* 

3. Thus far to the disciples. And now for its application to *the 
multitudes ' ^ — although here also He could only repeat what on a 
former occasion He had said to the Pharisees.* Let them not think 
that all this only concerned the disciples. No ; it was a question be- 
tween Israel and their Messiah, and the struggle would involve the 
widest consequences, alike to the people and the Sanctuary. Were 
they so blind as not * to know how to interpret the time ' ? CoolA 
they not read its signs — they who had no difficulty in interpreting i^ 
when a cloud rose from the sea, or the sirocco blew from the south? '^ 
Why then — ^and here St. Luke is again alone in his report ^ — di(^ 
they not, in the circumstances, of themselves judge what was rights 
and fitting and necessary, in view of the gathering tempest ? 

* Ck>mp. before, under 1, p. 218. ^K17n. or else the ^Kl^l of the RabbU. 

* This clause is most important for the * The observant reader will notice bai^ 
interpretation of that which precedes it, characteristic the small diflezences are^ 
showing that it cannot be taken in sensu Thus, the sirocco would net be ezpecto^ 
maUt, It cannot therefore be * the fire of in Galilee, bat in Persea, and in the latte^ 
judgment ' (Plumptre). also the first flowers would appear mwi0 

* Probably, as Wumohe suggests, the earlier. 


What was it ? Even what He had told them before in Galilee,^ chap. 
for the circumstances were the same. What common sense and xni 
<^mmon prudence would dictate to every one whom his accuser or . st. Matt. 
creditor haled before the magistrate : to come to an agreement with ^* ' 
him before it was too late, before sentence had been pronounced and 
execated.^ And although the illustration must, of course, not be Lf^g^^® 
literally pressed as regards its details, it was easy to understand its 
general meaning. 

4. Besides these Discourses, two events are recorded before 
Christ's departure to the * Feast of the Dedication.' Each of these 
led to a brief Discourse, ending in a Parable. 

The first records two circumstances not mentioned by the Jewish 
histarian Jo%epku%^ nor in any other historical notice of the time, 
either by Sabbinic or other writers. This shows, on the one hand, 
how terribly conmion such events must have been, when they could 
be so generally omitted from the long catalogue of Pilate's misdeeds 
towards the Jews. On the other hand, it also evidences that the 
narratiye of St. Luke was derived frpm independent, authentic 
sources — in other words, the historical character of his narrative — 
when he could refer as well known to facts, which are not mentioned 
in any other record of the times ; and, lastly, that we are not war- 
ranted in rejecting a notice, simply because we find no other mention 
of it than on the pages of the Third Gospel. 

It appears that, just then, or quite soon afterwards, some persons 

told Christ about a number of His own Galileans, whom Pilate had 

oideied to be cut down, as we infer, in the Temple, while engaged in 

offering their sacrifices,^ so that, in the pictorial language of the East, *^^}!^^ 

their blood had mingled with that of their sacrifices. Clearly, their nar- 

^on of this event must be connected with the preceding Discourse 

^^ Jesus. He had asked them, whether they could not discern the 

f^S^is of the terrible national storm that was nearing. And it was 

^ '^ference to this, as we judge, that they repeated this story. To 

^erstand their object, we must attend to the answer of Christ. It 

^ ^tended to refute the idea, that these Galileans had in this been 

^ted by a special punishment of some special sin against God. 

"^^o questions here arise. Since between Christ's visit to Jerusalem 

^ the Feast of Tabernacles and that at the Dedication of the Temple 

^^ festival took place, it is most probable that this event had happened 

!l*liia omiflsioii goes far to prove the G^esch. ii. pp. 62 &c.), that the writings 
?^|^UidleaBne0f of the charge brought by of Josephus have been largely falsified by 
^^^^9^ and lately by Joil (Bl. in d. Belig. Christian copyists. 


before ChriBt's visit to Jerusalem. But in that case it seems mori 
likely — almost certain — that Christ had heard of it before. If so, 
or, at any rate, if it was not quite a recent event, why did these 
men tell Him of it then and there P Again, it seems strange that, 
although the Jews connected special sins with special poni^UDHits, 
they should have regarded it as the Divine punishment of a Bpedil 
sin to have been martyred by a Pilate in the Temple, while engaged 
in offering sacrifices. 

All this becomes quite plain, if we regard these men as tiying 
to turn the edge of Jesus' warning by a kind of * Tv, quoqae ' aigo- 
ment. Very probably these Galileans were thus ruthlessly mutdeied, 
because of their real or suspected connection with the Nationalist 
movement, of which Ctalilee was the focus. It is as if these Jen 
had said to Jesus : Yes, signs of the times and of the coming stomr 
These Galileans of yours, your own countrymen, involved in a kind 
of Pseudo-Messianic movement, a kind of ' signs of the times' 
rising, something like that towards which you want as to look — ^mr 
not their death a condign punishment ? This latter inference thej 
did not express in words, but impHed in their narration of the fert. 
But the Lord read their thoughts and refuted their reasoning. Fof 
this purpose He adduced another instance,* when a tower at the 
Siloam-Pool had fallen on eighteen persons and killed them, perhaps 
in connection with that construction of an aqueduct into Jerusalem 
by Pilate, which called forth, on the part of the Jews, the violent i^ 
position, which the Roman so terribly avenged. As good Jews, they 
would probably think that the fall of the tower, which had boried 
in its ruins these eighteen persons, who were perhaps eng^ed in the 
building of that cursed structure, was a just judgment of God ! F« 
Pilate had used for it the sacred money which had been devoted to 
'■ Temple-purposes (the Korhan)^ and many there were who perished 
in the tumult caused by the Jewish resistance to this act of profcns' 
tion. But Christ argued, that it was as wrong to infer that Dirin^ 
judgment had overtaken His Galilean countrymen, as it would be to^ 
judge that the Tower of Siloam had fallen to punish these Jerosi- 
lemites. Not one party only, nor another; not the supposed Mes- 
sianic tendency (in the shape of a national rising), nor, on the other 
hand, the opposite direction of absolute submission to Soman domi- 
nation, was in fault. The whole nation was guilty ; and the coming 
storm, to the signs of which He had pointed, would destroy all, 
unless there were spiritual repentance on the part of the nation. 
And yet wider than this, and applying to all time, is the underlying 


Diiiiciple, that, when a calamity belallB a district or an aggregation of chap. 
ndividnals, we ought not to take to onrselveB judgment as to its xm 
ipedal causation, but to think spiritually of its general application — ' " 

lot so much to seek to trace what ie the character of its connection 
irith a district or iDdividualB, as to learn its lessons and to regard them 
IS a call addressed to all. And conversely, also, this holds true in 
regard to deliveraDces, 

Having thus answered the implied objection, the Lord next 
showed, in the Parable of the Fig-tree," the need and urgency of J5f-|:5J" 
national repentance.' 

The second event recorded by St. Luke in this connection" j;^^jj;^,' 
recalls the incidents of the early Judfean " and of the Galilean Min- ■ si- Joi™ » 
iitry.* We observe the same narrow views and extemalism as be- istiuu. 
fore in regard to the Sabbath on the part of the Jewish authorities, ""■*■" 
aod, OB the part of Christ, the same wide principles and spiritual 
application. If we were in search of evidence of the Divine Mia- 
rion of Jesus, we would find it in this contrariety on so funda- 
mental a point, since no teacher in Israel nor Reformer of that time 
— not the most advanced Sadducee — would have defended, far less 
originated, the views as to the Sabbath which Christ now propounded.* 
Again, if we were in quest of evidence of the historical truthfulness 
of the Gospel-narratives, we would find it in a comparison of the nar- 
ratives of the three Sabbath -controversies : in Jerusalem, in Galilee, 
and in Penea. In all the spirit was the same. And, although the dif- 
ferences between them may seem shght, they are characteristic, and 
mark, as if they pointed with the finger, the locality and circum- 
stances in which each took place. In Jerusalem there is neither 
reasoning nor rebuke on the part of the Jews, but absolute perse- 
cntion. There also the Lord enters on the higher exposition of His 
action, motives, and Mission.* In Galilee there is questioning, and 'StJoiun 
winning intrigue against Him on the part of the Judeeans who ' 
^o^«d His steps. But while no violence can be attempted against 
Him, the people do not venture openly to take His part.' But in 'at- M»ti. 
Pnwv we are confronted by the clumsy zeal of a country-Archi- 
■joagogos (Chief Ruler of a Synagogue), who is very angry, but not 
^ wise ; who admits Christ's healing power, and does not dare to 
ittack Him directly, but, instead, rebukes, not Christ, not even the 
wonaii who had been healed, but the people who witnessed it, at the 
noie time telling them to come for healing on other days, not 

' Fix tha expoaitioti of tbU Parable. 
1 m« to ttat of all the Parablea of that 


BOOK perceiving, in his narrow-minded bigotry, what this admisnoo 
IV implied. This rustic Buler had not the cunning, nor even the 

•St. Luke coura^^e, of the Judsean Pharisees in Cralilee, whom the Lord had 

_j|| t n 111 ^ 

formerly convicted and silenced. Enough, to show this obscure 
Persean partisan of Pharisaism and the like of him their utter foUy, 
•»st Ma**, and that by their own admissions.' And presently, not only were 
His adversaries ashamed, while in Galilee they went out and held a 
council against Him,^ but the people were not afraid, as the Gkdileans 
had been in presence of their rulers, and openly rejoiced in the 
glorious working of the Christ. 

Little more requires to be added about this incident in ^ one of 
the Synagogues ' of PersBa. Let us only briefly recall the scene : hot 
among those present in this Synagogue had been a poor woman, 
who for eighteen years had been a sufferer, as we learn, throuf^ 
demoniac agency. It is quite true that most, if not all, such diseaaei 
were connected with moral distemper, since demoniac possesflum 
was not permanent, and resistance might have been made in the 
lucid intervals, if there had been moral soundness. But it is us- 
groimded to distinguish between the * spirit of infirmity' as the 
moral and psychical, and her being ^ bent,' as indicating the physical 
disease,* or even to describe the latter as a * permanent curvature d 
the spine.' ^ The Greek word here rendered * infirmity ' has passed 
into Rabbinic language {hteniseyahy n^D^3nD^K)> and there means, 
not any particular disease, but sickliness, sometimes weakliness. In 
fact, she was, both physically and morally, not sick, but sickly, and 
most truly was hers * a spirit of infirmity,' so that * she was bowed 
together, and could in no wise lift herself up.' For, we mark that» 
hers was not demoniac possession at all — and yet, though she had- 
not yielded, she had not effectually resisted, and so she was ^ bound 
by * a spirit of infirmity,' both in body and soul. 

We recognise the same * spirit of infirmity ' in the circumstanced 
of her healing. When Christ, seeing her — probably a fit symbol o^ 
the Peraeans in that Synagogue — called her, she came ; when H^ 
said unto her, * Woman, thou hast been loosed ^ from thy sickliness, 
she was unbound, and yet in her weakliness she answered not^no^ 
straightened herself, till Jesus *laid His Hands on her,' and bC^ 
strengthened her in body and soul, and then she was immediately 
* made straight, and glorified God.' 

• This is the view of Oodet, who regards ^ g^ Dean Plumptre. 

the ' Thou hast been loosed * as referring ' So, and not as in the A. Y. 

to the psychical ailment. 


Aa for the Archisynagogos, we have, as already hinted, such cha- 
cteriBtic portiaitare of him that we can almost see Mm : confdsed, 
■esolute, perplexed, and very angry, bustling forward and scolding 
e people who had done nothing, yet not venturing to silence the 
>man, now no longer infirm — &r less, to reprove the great Babbi, 
lio had jnst done such a * glorious thing,' but speaking at Him 
roogh those who had been the astounded eye-witnesses. He was 
sily and effectually silenced, and all who sympathiBed with bim 
Lt to ehame. ' Hypocrites ! ' spahe the Lord— on yoor own admis- 
ma your practice and yoor Law condemn yoor speech. Every one 
the Sabbath looseth his ox or ass, and leads bim to the watering. 
le Bsbbinic law expressly allowed this,' and even to draw the 
it«r, provided the vessel were not carried to the animal.' If, as ' 
a admit, I have the power of 'loosing' from the bonds of Satan, 
id she has been so bound these eighteen years, should she — a 
Aghter of Abraham — not have that done for her which you do for 
>Tir beasts of burden ? 

The retort was unanswerable and irresistible ; it did what was 

atended: it covered the adversaries with shame. And the Peneans 

a that Synagogue felt also, at least for the time, the blessed free- 

iom which had come to that woman. They took up the echoes of 

bet hymn of praise, and ' rejoiced for all the glorious things that 

*ere done by Him.' And He answered their joy by rightly directing 

it — by setting before them ' the Kingdom,' which He had come both 

to preach and to bring, in all its freeness, reality, power, and all- 

penading energy, as exhibited in the two Parables of the * Mus- 

tudrseed ' and ' the Leaven,' spoken before in Cralilee. These were 

low repeated, as specially suited to the circumstances : first, to the 

Oracle they had witnessed ; then, to the contention that had 

I*«ed; and, lastly, to their own state of feeling. And the practical 

*Pplic8tion of these Parables must have been obvions to all. 

This ns not contrary to the Bab- poses. The rule ia quite different from 
""^ la", as Canon Cook (ad loc.) sup- that which applied in St. Matt. adi. U. 




(St. Lnke xiii. 22 ; St. John i. 22-42.) 

Abol't tvo months had passed since Jesus had left Jenisal«m after 
the Feast of Tabernacles. Althoagh we must not commit onnelns 

" to such calculations, we may here mention the computation wfaidi 
identities the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles of that year* 
with Thursday the 23rd September ; the last, ' the Great Day of tbs 
Feast,' with Wednesday the 29th ; the Octave of the Feast with tie 
30th September ; and the Sabbath when the man bom blind m 
healed with the 2nd of October.' In that case, ' the Feast of 
the Dedication of the Temple,' which commenced on the 25th daj 
of Chislev, and lasted eight days, would have begun on Wedneediy 
the 1st, and closed on Wednesday the 8th December. But, possibl/t 
it may have been a week or two later. At that Feast, or about tw 
months after He had quitted the City, we find Christ once more in 
Jerusalem and in the Temple. His journey thither seems indicated 
in the Third Gospel (St. Luke xiii. 22), and is at least implied in 
the opening words with which St. John pre^ea his narrative (A what 

:. happened on that occasion.'" 

As we think of it, there seems special fitness — presently to b« 
pointed out — in Christ's spending what we regard as the last anni- 
versary season of His Birth ' in the Temple at that Feast. It n^ 
not of Biblical origin, but had been instituted by Judas Maccaban^ 
in 164 B.C., when the Temple, which had been desecrated by Antioeha^ 
Epiphanes, was once more purified, and re-dedicated to the Service »^ 
Jehovah.' Accordingly, it was designated as ' the Dedication of th^" 
Altar.'* Joaephus" calls it 'The Lights,' from one of the prineiptB- 
observances at the Feast, though he speaks in hesitating language o^ 

• in«*«fc?-,Chronolog. STnopse, pp. 482, ■ The subject has been more ftdl^^ 

483. treate<linBiiarticleinlhe']:,eimireHaiir 

» It mnst, howeTor, be admitted that tor Deo. 1873 : 'Christnuu, a Pestiralo "^ 

Mme commentatoisdiaw an oppositein- Jewish Origin.' 
ference from tbeae nords. 


lie origin of the festival as coiineeted with this observance — })ro- cuAP. 
Dably because, while he knew, he was ashamed to avow, and yet xiv 
Lfraid to deny his belief in the Jewish legend connected with it. The ^ ' ' 
Fews called it Chanukah^ ' dedication ' or ' consecration,' and, in 
Dauch the same sense, Enkainia in the Greek of the LXX.,* ' and in •£»* vi i«, 

17 • Neh. 

the New Testament. During the eight days of the Feast the series of xuIst; dmu 
Psalms known as the Hallel ^ was chanted in the Temple, the people b ^ ^^^^^ 
responding as at the Feast of Tabernacles.^ Other rites resembled those ^^^^^ 
of the latter Feast. Thus, originally, the people appeared with palm- 
branches.® This, however, does not seem to have been afterwards ob- * s Mace. 


served, while another rite, not mentioned in the Book of Maccabees — 
that of illuminating the Temple and private houses — became cha- 
racteristic of the Feast. Thus, the two festivals, which indeed are put 
in juxtaposition in 2 Mace. x. 6, seem to have been both exter- 
nally and internally connected. The Feast of the ' Dedication,' or of 
' Lights,' derived from that of Tabernacles its duration of eight days, 
the chanting of the HaUel^ and the practice of carrying palm-branches. 
On the other hand, the rite of the Temple-illumination may have 
passed from the Feast of the ^ Dedication ' into the observances of that 
of ^Tabernacles.' Tradition had it, that, when the Temple-Services 
were restored by Judas Maccabaeus, the oil was found to have been 
desecrated. Only one flagon was discovered of that which was pure, 
sealed with the very signet of the High-Priest. The supply proved 
just sufficient to feed for one day the Sacred Candlestick, but by a 
iniracle the flagon was continually replenished during eight days, till 
a fresh supply could be brought from Thekoah. In memory of this, 
it was ordered the following year, that the Temple be illuminated for 
eight days on the anniversary of its * Dedication.' * The Schools of ;J suabb. 
Hillel and Shammai difiFered in regard to this, as on most other ob- ii to 8 from 
senances. The former would have begun the first night with the 
smallest number of lights, and increased it every night till on the 
^%tth it was eight times as large as on the first. The School of 
Shammai, on the other hand, would have begun with the largest 
'inmber, and diminished, till on the last night it amounted to an 
^th of the first. Each party had its own — not very satisfectory — 
^^^^80118 for its distinctive practice, and its own adherents.* But the • shabb. 
^hts' in honour of the Feast were lit not only in the Temple, but theinwaie 

ftimilarly, the cognate words iyKolruris also occurs Heb. iz. 18 ; x. 20. 

^^^Jhnu^uf/iSs, as well as the verb ' See ch. vli. This was alwajs the 

'J2^v(fii), are frequently used both in case when the Hallel was chanted. 
^ I*XX. and the Apocrypha. The verb 

Q 2 


in every home. One woold have sufficed for the whole hoosehold 
on the first evening, but pions householders lit a light fw every 
~^ inmate of the home, so that, if ten burned on the first, there would 
be eighty ou the last night of the Festival. According to the Talmud, 
the light might be placed at the entrance to the house or room, or, ^ 
according to circumstances, in the window, or even on the table.^ 
According to modem practice the light is placed at the left on enter— ^ 
ing a room (the Mesueah is on the right). Certain benedictions ar^« 
spoken on lighting these lights, all work is stayed, and the festiv — « 
time spent in merriment.' The first night ia specially kept in me- 
mory of Judith, who is supposed then to have slain Holofemea, aad 
cheese is freely partaken of as the food of which, according to l^end, 
she gave him so largely, to incite him to thirst and drunkenness.' 
Lastly, during this Festival, all fasting and public mourning wen 
prohibited, though private mourning was allowed.* 

More interesting, perhaps, than this description of the oatwaid 
observances is the meaning of this Festival and its connection with 
the Feast of Tabernacles, to both of which reference has already been 
made. Like the Feast of Tabernacles, it commemorated a Divine 
Victoiy, which again gave to Israel their good land, after they had 
once more undergone sorrows like those of the wilderness ; it was an- 
other harvest-feast, and pointed forward to yet another ingathering. 
As the once extinguished light was relit in the Temple — and, ac- 
cording to Scriptural imagery, might that not mean the Light of 
Israel, the Lamp of David ?— it grew day by day in brightness, till it 
shone quite out into the heathen darkness, that once had threatened 
to quench it. That He Who purified the Temple, was its True 
Light, and brought the Great Deliverance, should (as hinted) have 
spent the last anniversary season of His Birth at that Feast in the 
Sanctuary, shining into their darkness, seems most fitting, especially 
as we remember the Jewish legend, according to which the making 
of the Tabernacle had been completed ou the 25th Chislev, although 
. it was not set up till the 1st of Nisan (the Paschal month)." 
} Thoughts of the meaning of this Feast, and of what was associated 
with it, will be helpful as we listen to the words which Jesus spake 
to the people in ' Solomon's Porch.' There is a pictorialness in the 

' In regard to the Intter Jewish Ip^nd. that is curious in 4 Midrubira (mpud 

the learned reader will find full quota- Jellinrk, lieth haMidr. i. pp. 130~146); 

tions (as, in general, much interesting the Moaseh Jehudilh, 2 Midr. for Cha- 

informationon the'Feastoftbe Dedica- nukah.and the M^lath Antiochos. See 

tion *) in Srlden, de SynedriU (ed. Frcf. also the Megillath Taanith (ed. Wanh. 

JG96) p. 1213, and in general from p. 1874). pp. 14 a to 16 i, 
1207 to 1214. The reader will Snd mnch 




clescription of the circumstances, which marks the eyewitness. It is 
^winter, and Christ is walking in the covered Porch,* in front of the 
* Beantifrd Grate,' which formed the principal entrance into the * Court ^" 
of the Women/ As He walks up and down, the people are literally 
IxLTring His Way — ^came round about' Him. From the whole 
circomstancefi we cannot doubt, that the question which they put : 
^ How long boldest Thou us in suspense ? ' had not an element 
of truthfulness or genuine inquiry. Their desire, that He should 
tell them * plainly ' if He were the Christ, had no other motive than 
that of grounding on it an accusation.^ The more clearly we perceive 
this, the more wonderful appears the Christ's forbearance, and the 
wisdom of His answer. Briefly He put aside their hypocrisy. What 
need was there of fresh speech ? He had told them before, and they 
* believe • not.* From words He appealed to the mute but indis- 
putable witness of deeds : the works which He wrought in His Father's 
Name. Their non-belief in presence of these fects was due to their 
not being of His Sheep. As He had said unto them before,* it was 
characteristic of His Sheep (as generally of every flofck in regard to 
its own shepherd) to hear — recognise, list en to — His Voice and follow 
Him. We mark in the words of Christ, a triplet of double parallel- 
isms concerning the Sheep and the Shepherd, in ascending climax,' as 'st John 
follows : — ^ 

My sheep hear My Voice, 

And they follow Me : 

And they shall never perish. 

And I know them, 
And I give unto them eternal life; 
And no one shall snatch them oat of 
My Hand. 

A similar fourfold parallelism with descending and ascending climax, 
but of an antithetic character, has been noticed ® in Christ's former 
Discourse in the Temple (St. John x. 13-15) — 

The hu'eling I 

Is an hireling, Am the good Shepherd, 

Careth not for the sheep. Know the sheep, 

Heeth Lay down My Life. 

» The location of this • Porch * in the 
passage under the present mosque M 
Aksa (proposed by Ceupari, Chronol. 
GeogT. Einleit. p. 266) is not only utterly 
deititate of, but so contrary to, all evi- 
dence, that I must express astonishment 
that it should have been adopted by so 
able a writer as Archdeacon WdtHns. 

* Commentators mostly take quite a 
diffarent yiew, and regard theirs as more 

or less honest inquiry. 

' According to the better reading, in 
the present tensa 

* This clause in ver. 26 of the A. V. 
must, if retained, be joined to ver. 27. 

* So, after the precedent of Bengel^ 
especially Lutha/rdt and Oodet, and after 
them others. 

* By Bengel. 


BOOK Bicher or more comforting assurance than that recorded shove 

IV could not have been given. But something special has here to be 
marked. The two first parallelisms always link the promise of Christ 
to the condition of the sheep ; not, perhaps, conditionally, for the 
relation is such as not to admit conditionalness, either in the fonn 
of ' because — ^therefore,' or even of ' if — then,* but as a matter of 
fact. But in the third parallelism there is no reference to anything 
on the part of the sheep ; it is all promise, and the second claofie 
only explains and intensifies what is expressed in the first. If it in- 
dicates attack of the fiercest kind and by the strongest and most 
cunning of enemies, be they men or devils, it also marks the watch- 
fulness and absolute superiority of Him Who hath them, as it were, 
in His Hand — ^perhaps a Hebraism for * power* — ^and hence their 
absolute safety. And, as if to carry twofold assurance of it. He re- 
minds His hearers that His Work being *the Father's Commaod- 
ment,' it is really the Father's Work, given to Christ to do, and no 
one could snatch them out of the Father's Hand. It is a poor cavil, 
to try to limit these assurances by seeking to grasp and compresB 
them in the hollow of our human logic. Do they convey what is 
commonly called * the doctrine of perseverance ' ? Nay ! but they 
teach us, not about our faith but about His faithfulness, and convey 
to us assmtmce concerning Him rather than ourselves ; and this is 
the only aspect in which 'the doctrine of perseverance ' is either safe, 
true, or Scriptural. 

But one logical sequence is unavoidable. Eightly understood* 
it is not only the last and highest announcement, but it contaia^ 
and implies everything else. If the Work of Christ is really that o^ 
the Father, and His Working also that of the Father, then it follow^ 
that He * and the Father are One ' (' one ' is in the neuter). ThL^ 
identity of work (and piu-pose) implies the identity of Natur^ 
(Essence); that of working, the identity of power.* And so, evi^^ 
dently, the Jews understood it, when they again took up stones witt^ 
the intention of stoning Him — no doubt, because He expressed, h^ 
yet more plain terms, what they regarded as His blasphemy. Onc^ 
more the Lord appealed from His Words, which were doubted, U^ 
His Works, which were indubitable. And so He does to all time^- 
His Divine Mission is evidence of His Divinity. And if His Divine^ 
Mission be doubted, He ai)peals to the * many excellent works' {xaKi^ 

* St. Auguitine marks, that the word does it not equally tell agaixmt al^ 
' one ' tells against Arianism, and the heresy ? 
plural * are * against Sabellianism. And 


tpya) which He hath ' shoved from the Father,' any one of which chap. 
might, and, in the case of not a few, had, served as evidence of His xir 
Miamon. And when the Jews ignored, as bo many in our days, this 
line of evidence, and insisted that He had been guilty of blasphemy, 
once, being a man) He had made Himself God, the Lord rephed in 
a manner that calls for oar special attention. From the peculiarly 
Hebraistic mode of destgnating a quotation from the Psalms' as •n-imu- 
' written in the Law,' ' we gather that we have here a literal tran- 
script of the very words of our Lord.' But what we speciftlly wish, 
is, emphatically, to disclaim any interpretation of them, which would 
seem to imply that Christ had wished to evade their inference : that 
He clainaed to be One with the Father — and to convey to them, that 
nothing more had been meant than what might lawfully be applied 
to an ordinary man. Such certainly is not the case. He had claimed 
to be One with the Father in work and working ; from which, of 
conrae, the necessary inference was, that He was also One with Him 
in Mature and Power. I^t us see whether the claim was strange. 
In Pa. Ixxzii. 6 the titles ' God' {Elokim) and 'Sons of the Highest' 
(^Beneg Elyon) bad been given to Judges as the Representatives and 
Vicegerents of God, wielding His delegated authority, since to them 
had oome His Word of authorisation. But here was authority not 
transmitted by ' the word,' but personal and direct consecration, and 
personal and direct Mission on the part of God. The comparison is 
not with Prophets, because they only told the word and mess^e 
from God, but with Judges, who, as such, did the very act of God. 
If those who, in so acting, received an indirect commission, were 
' gods,' the very representatives of God,' could it be blasphemy when 
He claimed to be the Son of God, Who had received, not authority 
thnmgh a word transmitted through long centuries, but direct per- 
wnal command to do the Father's Work; had been directly and 
penonally consecrated to it by the Father, and directly and person- 
•Uj aent by Him, not to say, but to do, the work of the Father ? 
Wag it not rather the true and necessary inference from these pre- 

In Rabbinic writings the word for on the third day (after the preparation) 

"^dWaA.or Oreya, oi Ora/an) U in the third month (Bivan),' tibabb. 8B a. 

Jp frequently used to denote not only ' We need acarcely call attention tothe 

'« Iav, bat the the whole Bible. Let evidence which it affords of the Judiean 

^ tmnple mfflce: 'Blessed be the aathorship of the Foortb Gospel, 

■wafni Vfho has gixen the threefold ' We wonld call attention to the words 

^,(|lt^)t, Pentateuch, Prophets, and 'The Scripture cannot be broken' (ver. 36) 

~*^<ign(ba)ta a threefold people(priest8, as evidential of the views which Jeena took 

j5™«». lutj) by the hands of a third of the authority of the Old Testament, 

i^'OM.beiiigtbethird bom of bis parents) as well ae ol ita insjuration. 


All would, of course, depend od this, whether Christ really ilii^t> 

the works of the Father." That was the test; and, as we instinct 

ively perceive, both rationally and truly. And if He did the work.^^ 
of His Father, then let them believe, if not the words yet the work^^B 
and thua would they arrive at the knowledge, 'and understand " — dis^^ 
tinguishing here the act from the etate * — that ' in Me is the Fatbei^^ 
and I in the Father.' In other words, recognising the Work as th^^ss 
of the Father, they would come to understand that the Fath^^s 
worked in Him, and that the root of His Work was in the Father. 

The stones were not thrown, for the words of Christ rendere;^=d 
impossible the charge of explicit blasphemy which alone would, aaiK^ 
cording to Rabbinic law, have warranted such summary vengeant-^e. 
Bat ' they sought again to seize Him,' soas t« drag Him before tht^ir 
tribunal. His time, however, had not yet come, 'and He went fortl 
out of their hand ' — how, we know not. 

Once more the Jordan rolled between Him and His bitter peis«- 
cators. Far north, over against Galilee, in the place of Jolmt 
early labours, probably close to where Jesus Himself had been 
baptized, was the scene of His last labours. And those, who so we" 
remembered botb the Baptist and the testimony which he had there 
borne to the Christ, recalled it all a.'< they listened to His Words ami 
saw His Works. As they crowded around Him, both the diffcrenw 
and the accord between John and Jeaus carried conriction to their 
minds. The Baptist had done ' no sign,'' such as those which Jesus 
wrought ; but all things which John had spoken of Him, they felt it, 
were true. And, undisturbed by the cavils of Pharisees and Scribei, 
many of these simple-minded, true-hearted men, far away from Jeru- 
salem, believed on Him. To adapt a saying of Beiigel : they were the 
posthumous children of the Baptist. Thus did he, being dead, yat 
speak. And so wilt all that is sown for Christ, though it lie buried ud 
foi^otten of men, spring up and ripen, as in one day, to the de^ 
grateful, and eternal joy of them who had laboured in faith and 
gone to rest in hope. 

' Thnfl, accarding- to the better reading. 

■ So Meyer. 

' The circumstanoe, tbat, acoording to 
the Gospels, no miracle was wroaght by 
John, is Dot onlf evidential of the trust- 
worthiness of their report of onr Lord's 
mirftcles, but otherwise also deeply 
rignificant. It ahows that tfaero is no 
omving for the miracolonF, as in tlic 
Apocryphal and legendary narrativos, and 
It provea tbat the Gospel-nanBtives 

were not cast in the monld cpf J e w i>^ 
contemporary expectancy, which wool"' 
certainly have assigned another rifc f 
Elijah as the Foreninner of the Mnrnif *^ 
Ihiui that of solitjtfy testimony, then C^ 
forsakenness, and, lastly, of cmel tai^ 
unavenged i^nrder at the hands of ^ 
Herodian. Truly, the hiaiorj- of Jesus ** 
not that of the Meosiah of Judaic '" 




(St. Luke X. 25-37 ; xi. 5-13.) 

period between Christ's return from the * Feast of the Dedica- 
tion ' and His last entry into Jerusalem, may be arranged into two 
divided by the brief visit to Bethany for the purpose of raising 
from the dead. Even if it were possible, with any certainty, 
chronologically to arrange the events of each of these periods, the 
variety and brie&ess of what is recorded would prevent our closely 
following them in this narrative. Accordingly, we prefer grouping 
them t<^ther as the Parables of that period, its Discourses, and its 
Events. And the record of the raising of Lazarus may serve as a 
landmark between our summary of the Parables and that of the 
Discourses and Events which preceded the Lord's final appearance in 

These last words help us to understand the necessary diflference 
^ween the Parables of this and of the preceding and the following 
periods. The Parables of this period look back upon the past, and 
fcnrard into the future. Those spoken by the Lake of Galilee were 
pDidy symbolical. They presented unseen heavenly realities under 
Qoblems which required to be translated into earthly language. It 
^ quite easy to do so, if you possessed the key to the heavenly 
"^yrteries ; otherwise, they were dark and mysterious. So to speak, 
^yrere easily read from above downwards. Viewed from below 
^V^uds, only most dim and strangely intertwining outlines could be 
P^ceived. It is quite otherwise with the second series of Parables. 
"^^ could, as they were intended, be imderstood by all. They re- 
Wired no translation. They were not symbolical but typical, using 
^'^word *type,' not in the sense of involving a predictive element,' ^^^ 
N; as indicating an example, or, perhaps, more correctly, an exem- 

Rom. T. 14 


BOOK plification.' Accordingly, the Parables of this series are also in- 
IV tensely practical. Lastly, their prevailing character is not desciip- 
rZHn ' tive, but hortatory ; and they bring the Gospel, in the sense of glad 
ii?Phii.V tidings to the lost, most closely and touchingly to the hearts of all 
lV; s^^ who hear them. They are signs in words, as the miracles are signs 
S^ ii;^m ' in works, of what Christ has come to do and to teach. Most of them . 
tt.7; iF^ bear this character openly; and even those which do not, bnt seem 
more like warning, have still an imdertone of love, as if Divine com- 
passion lingered in tender pity of that which threatened, but might 
yet be averted. 

Of the Parables of the third series it will for the present suffiec 
to say, that they are neither symbolical nor typical, but their pre- 
vailing characteristic is prophetic. As befits their historical place in 
the teaching of Christ, they point to the near future. They are the 
&st falling, lengthening shadows cast by the events which are near 
at hand. : 

The Parables of the second (or Persean) series, which are typical 
and hortatory, and ^ Evangelical ' in character, are thirteen in num- 
ber, and, with the exception of the last, are either peculiar to, or 
else most fully recorded in, the Gospel by St. Luke. 
*Bt.^Lnkex. 1. Tht Pavoble of the Good Samaritan.^ — This Parable is con- 
nected with a question, addressed to Jesus by a ' lawyer ' — not one of 
the Jerusalem Scribes or Teachers, but probably an expert in Jewish- 
Canon Law,* who possibly made it more or less a profession in that 
district, though perhaps not for gain. Accordingly, there is a markoA 
absence of that rancour and malicie which characterised his colleagnie^ 
of Judsea. In a previous chapter it has been shown, that this narrative 
probably stands in its proper place in the Gospel of St. Luke.* V^ 
have also suggested, that the words of this lawyer referred, or eto^ 
that himself belonged, to that small party among the Babbiniafc^ 
who, at least in theory, attached greater value to good works than tX> 
study. At any rate, there is no occasion to impute directly evil 
motives to him. Knowing the habits of his class, we do not wond^ 
that he put his question to ' tempt ' — test, try — the great Babbi erf 
Nazareth. There are many similar instances in Kabbinic writings <rf 
meetings between great Teachers, when each tried to involve tb^ 
other in dialectic difficulties and subtle disputations. Indeed, thiB 
was part of Rabbinism, and led to that painfal and fatal trifling with 

* A distinction between different the Prophets, such as Dean Plumftn 

classes of Scribes, of whom some gave suggests (on 8t. Matt. zzii. 36). did Dfll 

themselves to the study of the Law, exist, 

while others included with it that of * See generally ch. ▼. of thia Book. 



truth, when everything became matter of dialectic subtlety, and chap. 
Tiothing was really sacred. What we require to keep in view is, that xv 
to this lawyer the question which he propounded was only one of ' 
theoretic, not of practical interest, nor matter of deep personal con- 
cern, as it was to the rich young ruler, who, not long afterwards, 
addressed a similar inquiry to the Lord.' x^^^is 

We seem to witness the opening of a regular Rabbinic contest, 

as we listen to this speculative problem : ' Teacher, what having done 

shall I inherit eternal life ? * At the foundation lay the notion, that 

eternal life was the reward of merit, of works : the only question was, 

what these works were to be. The idea of guilt had not entered 

his mind ; he had no conception of sin within. It was the old Judaism 

of self-righteousness speaking without disguise : that which was the 

idtimate ground of the rejecting and crucifying of the Christ. There 

certainly was a way in which a man might inherit eternal life, not 

indeed as having absolute claim to it, but (as the Schoolmen might 

have said : de congruo) in consequence of Grod's Covenant on Sinai. 

And so our Lord, using the common Rabbinic expression * what 

readest thou ? ' (riKlp ^Kd), pointed him to the Scriptures of the Old 


The reply of the * lawyer * is remarkable, not only on its own 
acconnt, but as substantially, and even literally, that given on two 
other occasions by the Lord Himself.** The question therefore **.^*\^*^. 
itttnrally arises, whence did this lawyer, who certainly had not xxii. 34-40 
spiritual insight, derive his reply ? As regarded the duty of abso- 
lute love to Grod, indicated by the quotation of Deut. vi. 5, there 
wold, of course, be no hesitation in the mind of a Jew. The 
primary obligation of this is frequently referred to, and, indeed, 
Wmi for granted, in Rabbinic teaching. The repetition of this 
command, which in the Talmud receives the most elaborate and 
"tnmge interpretation,^ formed part of the daily prayers. When 
Jesug referred the lawyer to the Scriptures, he could scarcely fail to 
Viote this first paramount obligation. Similarly, he spoke as a 
wbinic lawyer, when he referred in the next place to love to our 
'^righbour, as enjoined in Lev. xix. 18. Rabbinism is never weary 
^ quoting as one of the characteristic sayings of its greatest 

* Thos : * •• With aU thy heart " — with to every measure with which He meafiures 

f^thy impokee, that to good and that to thee art thou bound to praise Him ' 

JO e»fl. M ^ni 3I1 thy *oul** — even if it (there is here a play on the words which 

***«*waythyaoul; "with all thy might " cannot be rendered), Ber. 54 a, about the 

T-'lwithiJl thy money.** Another interpre- middle. 
*«a: -With aU thy might "—in regard 


teacber, Hillel (vho, of course, lived before tliis time), that b« bti 
summed up the Law, in briefest compass, in theae worda: 'WTutli 
hateful to thee, that do not to another. This is the whole Lawj Uw 
rest is only its explanation.'* Similarly, Rabbi Akiba taught, ttmC 
Lev. xis. 18 was the prinfipal rule, we might almost, say, the chirf 
summary of the Law (mina^nj^j^a)." Still, the two principlB 
just mentioned are not enunciated in conjunction by Rabbinisn!, 
nor seriously propounded as either coutaining the whole Lair or v 
Kecuriug heaven. They are also, as we shall presently tee, sub- 
jected to gi-ave modifications. One of these, as regards the negative 
form in which Hillel put it, while Christ put it positively,'' ' has been 
previously noticed. The existence of such Rabbinic modificaticoa, 
and the circumstance already mentioned, that on two other oca- 
sions the answer of Christ Himself to a similar inquiry was precieelj 
that of this lawyer, suggest the inference, that this question mil' 
have been occasioned by some teaching of Christ, to wbicli thfj 
had just listened, and that the reply of the lawyer may have lew 
prompted by what Jesua had preached concerning the Ijiw. 

If it be asked, why Christ, seemed to give His assent to tbe 
lawyer's answer, as if it really pointed to the right solution of lb* 
great question, we reply : No other answer could have been givai 
him. On the ground of works — if that had been tenable — this tw 
the way to heaven. To understand any other answer, would hKK 
required a sense of sin; and this could not be imparted by reason- 
ing : it must be experienced. It is the very preaching of the Ls' 
7 which awakens in the mind a sense of sin.* Besides, if nt* 
morally, yet mentally, the difficulty of this ' way ' would soon 
BUggest itself to a Jew. Such, at least, is one aspect of tbf 
eonnter-question with which 'the lawyer 'now sought to retort on 

Whatever complexity of motives there may have been — for •• 
know nothing of the circimi stances, and there may have been Ui*^ 
in the conduct or heart of the lawyer which was specially toucbe» 
by what had just passed — there can be no doubt as to the mai"^ 
object of his question ; ' But who is my neighbour ? ' He wished ' ^* 
justify himself,' in the sense of vindicating his original question, ao* 
showing that it was not quite so easily solved as the answer of JesO 

' llatahttrger (Reel Encjcl., Abtb. ii. 
p. Ill) makes the remarkable admission 
that thenegative form was ohoeen to make 
the commiAd 'possible' and 'praclical.' 

It is not so that Christ has accimtnudA^ 
the Divine Laiv to oar sinfulness. ^ 
previous remarks on thb Law in Book " 


•emed to imply. And here it was that Chriflt could in a ' Parable ' cha: 
low how fur orthodox Judaism was from even a trae understanding, xv 
inch more bom such perfect observaDce of this Law aa would gain ^ 

eaven. Thus might He bring even this man to feel his short- 
omingB and sins, and awaken in him a sense of his great need. 
This, of course, would be the negative aspect of this Parable ; the 
Motive is to ail time and to all men. 

Thai question : * Who is my neighbour ? ' has ever been at the 
same time the outcome of Judaism (as distinguished from the religion 
of the Old Testament), and also its curse. On this point it is duty 
to speak plainly, even in face of the wicked persecutions to which 
the Jews have been exposed on account of it. Whatever modem 
Judaism may aay to the contrary, there is a foundation of truth 
in the ancient heathen charge against the Jews of oddv/m generis 
fcumani (hatred of mankind). God had separated Israel unto Him- 
seU l^ purification and renovation — and this is the original meaning 
of the word * holy ' and ' sanctify ' in the Hebrew (enp)- They 
sepMuted themselves in self-righteousness and pride — and that is 
tlie original meaning of the word ' Pharisee ' and ' Pharisaism ' (efnu). 
In so saying no blame is cast on individuals ; it is the system which 
ia at bnlt. This question: 'Who is my neighbour?' frequently 
engages Rabbinism. The answer to it is only too clear. If a hyper- 
aiticism were to interpret away the passage ' which directs that ■ ak bi 
"ifUlora are not to be delivered when in imminent danger, while 
'leretics and apostates are even to be led into it, the painful discus- 
aononthemeaningof Exod. xxiii. 5'' would place it beyond question, "b.!* 
The Bum of it is, that, except to avert hostiUty, a' burden is only to 
'ximloaded, if the beast that lieth under it belongeth to an Israelite, 
""t it it belong to a Gentile; and so the expression," 'the ass of 'Ei.!. 
'^'in that hateth thee,' must be understood of a Jewish, and not of a 
•"Wtile enemy (n'K NiiC «Si hvnef" NJlc)-** sit^a 

It is needless to follow the subject further. But more complete (romuo 
'sbnle of Judaistic narrowness, as well as more full, generous, and 
^tual world-teaching than that of Christ's Parable could not be 
iougined. The scenery and colouring are purely local. And here 
>« jhonid remember, that, while admitting the lawfulness of the widest 
application of details for homiletical purposes, we must take care not 
(o press them in a strictly exegetical inter] >retatioo.' 

' Ai to man; of these allegorisation! 
Calrim rigbtly observes : ' Scriptun 
major habmida est levereDtia, quam n 


Some one coming from the Holy City, the metropolis of Jodainn, 
is purauing the solitary desert-road, those twenty-one miles to 
Jericho, a district notoriously insecore, when he ' fell among roUMt, 
who, having both stripped and inflicted on him strokes, went snj 
leaving him jnst as he was,' half dead.' This is the first scene. The 
second opens with an expression which, theologically, as well m 
exegetically, is of the greatest interest. The word rendered 'bf 
chance ' (vvyKvpia) occurs only in this place,* for Scripture com- 
monly views matters in relation to agents rather than to resolU. 
As already noted,' the real meaning of the word is ' concarrenee,' 
mnch like the corresponding Hebrew term (mpo)- And bette 
definition could not be given, not, indeed, of * Providence,' which it 
a heathen abstraction for which the Bible has no equivalent, but fir 
the concrete reality of God's providing. He provides through a cob- 
currence of circumstances, all in themselves natural and in tlie 
enccession of ordinary causation (and this distinguishes it team the 
miracle), but the concurring of which is directed and overruled hj 
Him. And this helps us to put aside those coarse tests of the reali^ 
of prayer and of the direct rule of God, which men sometimes pn^nae. 
Such stately ships ride not in such shallow waters. 

It was by such a ' concurrence,' that, first a priest, then a Levite, 
came down that road, when each, successively, * when he saw hint 
passed by over against (him).' It was the principle of questioningi 
' Who is my neighbour ? ' which led both priest and Levite to mi 
heartless conduct. Who knew what this wounded man was, and hoi 
he came to lie there ; and were they called upon, in ignorance of 
this, to take all the trouble, perhaps incur the risk of life, which are 
of him would involve ? Thus Judaism (in the persons of its chiflf 
representatives) had, by its exclusive attention to the letter, come to 
destroy the spirit of the Law. Happily, there came yet another thrf 
way, not only a stranger, but one despised, a semi-heathen Samaritan-* 
He asked not who the man was, but what was bis need. What- 
ever the wotmded Jew might have felt towards him, the SamariW 
proved a true ' neighbour.' ' He came towards him, and behold* 
ing him, he was moved with compassion.' His resolution w»* 
soon taken. He first bound tip his wounds, and then, takiD^ 
from his travelling provision wine and oil, made of them whit 
was regarded as the common dressing for wounds.* Next, having 

' *^/ii(WS Tuy^cJujiTa, Germ., mie er • Vol. i. p. 660. 

ehen rear' Orimm, Clavis N. T. p. 138 it ' In the Greek, ver. 33 begins with ' 4 

' I cannot (with Dean Flvrnptre) see Sftmaritan, however,' to emphasse U* 

any irony in the exprestion. contrast to the priest and Levite. 


'set' (lifted) him on his om beaBt, be walked by his side, and chap. 
iROQght him to one of those bouBee of rest and entertainment, zt 
whose designation (TravBoj^^giov) has passed into Babbinic language ' '" 

(iqruw)* These khans, or hostelries, by the dde of an&eqaented 
raads, ftffiHrded free lodgment to the tntveller. Bat generally they 
also offered entertainment, in which case, of course, the host, com- 
monly a non-Ismelite, charged for Uie victuals supplied to man 
or beASt, or for the care taken. In the present instance the Sama- 
ritan seems himself to have tended the wounded man all that 
evening. But even thus his care did not end. The next morning, 
before continning his journey, he gave to the host two dinars — 
about one shilling and threepence of our money, the amount of a 
labonrer's wages for two days,' — as it were, two days' wages for hia •st.MKt. 
care of him, with this provision, that if any further expense were 
incurred, either because the wounded man was not sufficiently 
recovered to travel, or else because something more had been supplied 
to him, the Good Samaritan would pay it when he next came 
that way. 

So tax the Parable ; its lesson * the lawyer ' is made himself to 
enunciate. ' Which of these three seems to thee to have become 
neighbour of him that fell among the robbers ? ' Though unwilling 
to take the hated name of Samaritan on his lips, especially as the 
meaning of the Parable and its anti-Rabbinie;bearing were so evident, 
the ' lawyer ' was obliged to reply, ' He that showed mercy on him,' 
vhen the Saviour finally answered, * Go, and do thou likewise.' 

Some farther lessons may be drawn. The Parable implies not 
tiDere enlargement of the Jewish ideas, but a complete change of 
them. It is truly a Gospel-Parable, for the whole old relationship of 
nneduty is changed into one of love. Thus, matters are placed on an 
^Uiiely different basis from that of Judaism. The question now is 
**'Who is my neighbour ? ' but * Whose neighbour am I ? ' The 
"*pel answers the qnestion of duty by pointing us to love. 
"OOldflt thou know who is thy neighbour ? Become a neighbour to 
•U by the utmost service thou canst do them in their need. And so 
•If Gospel would not only abolish man's enmity, but bridge over man's 
•epuation. Thus is the Parable truly Christian, and, more than this, 
pointe up to Him Who, in our great need, became Neighbour to us, 
eren at the cost of all He had. And from Him, as well as by His 
Word, are we to learn our lesson of love. 

2. The Parable which follows in St. Luke's narrative'' seems "si luj™ 
closely connected with that just commented upon. It is also a **■*"" 


story of a good neighbonr who gives in our need, bat 
auother aspect of the truth to which the Parable of the Goc^i^ 
Samaritan had pointed. Love bends to oar need: this is t^^ 
objective manifestation of the Gospel. Need looks up to love, aiK/ 
by its cry elicits the boon which it seeks. And this is the sul^ectini 
experience of the Gospel. The one underlies the attxcy of the fint 
Parable, the other that of the second. 

Some such internal connection between the two Parables seemi, 
indeed, indicated even by the loose manner in which this Beoaxi 
Parable is strung to the request of some disciples to be taught wh«t 
to pray.* Like the Parable of the * Good Sajnaritan,' it is typiol, 
and its application would be the more felt, that it not only pointi 
to an exemplification, but appeals to every man's conscioosnesa of 
what himself woold do in certain circumstances. These are : A min 
has a Mend who, long after nightfall, unexpectedly comes to him 
from a journey. He has nothing in the house, yet he must {ffovide 
for his need, for hospitality demands it. Accordingly, though it be 
so late, he goes to his &iend and neighbour to ask him for three 
loaves, stating the case. On the other hand, the firiend so asked. 
refuses, since, at that late hour, be has retired to bed with hi» 
children, and to grant hie request would imply not only his owA- 
inconvenience, but the disturbing of the whole household. Th^ 
main circumstances are : Sudden, unthought-of sense of imper^v^v 
need, obliging to make what seems an unseasonable and unreason — 
able request, which, on the face of it, offers difficulties and has nO 
claim upon compliance. It is, therefore, so to speak, not ordinary 
but extraordinary prayer, which is here referred to. 

To return to the Parable : the question (abruptly broken oflF froCO 
the beginning of the Parable in ver. 5) is, what each of as would <!<' 
in the circumstances just detailed. The answer is implied in wbtf^ 
follows." It points to continued importunity, which would at la*^ 
obtain what it needs. ' I tell you, even if he will not give him* 
rising up, because he is his friend, yet at least ' on account of hi* 
importunity, he will rise up and give him as many as he needetb* 
This Uteral rendering will, it is hoped, remove some of the seemio^ 
difficulties of the Parable. It is a gross misunderstanding to descril?^ 
it as presenting a mechanical view of prayer : as if it implied, eith*' 
that God was unwilling to answer ; or else, that prayer, otherwi** 
nnheard, would be answered merely for its importunity. It must l>* 
remembered, that he who is within is a friend, and that, under ord^' 

' lul yt, Ooehel, ail loc. 


aary cdrcunutances, he would at once have complied with the reqaeet. 

Bat, in this case, there were epecial difficolties, which are rep^sented 

SB very great : it is midniglit ; he has retired to bed, and with his 

children ; the door is locked. And the lesson is, that where, tor 

some reasons, there are, or seem, special difficulties to an answer to 

oor prayers (it is very late, the door is no longer open, the children 

have already been gathered in), the importtmit; arising &om the 

senae of onr absolute need, and the knowledge that He is our Friend, 

and that He has bread, will ultimately prevail. The difficulty is not 

as to the giving, but as to the giving then — ' rising up,' and this is 

overcome by perseverance, so that (to return to the Parable), if he 

iriU not rise up because he is his &iend, yet at least he will rise 

^>ccaase of his importunity, and not only give him * three ' loaves, 

bnt, in general, * as many as he needeth.' 

So important is the teachiug of this Parable, Uiat Christ makes 

detailed application of it. In the circumstances described a man would 

Persevere with bis friend, and in the end succeed. And, similarly, the 

lord bids us * ask,' and that earnestly and believiugly j ' seek,' and 

^at. eoei^etically and instantly ; ' knocks' and that intently and 

loiMily. Ask — He is a Friend, and we shall ' receive ; ' ' seek,' it is 

there, and we shall 'find;' * knock,' — our need is absolute, and it 

shall be opened to us. But the emphasis of the Parable and its 

lesson are in the ' every one.' Not only this or that, but ' every one,' 

shall BO experience it. The word points to the special difficulties that 

Bay be in the way of answer to prayer — the difficulties of the ' rising 

wp»' which have been previously indicated in the Parable. These are 

met by perseverance which indicates the reality of our need (' ask '), 

Ihe reality of our behef that the supply is there (' seek '), and the 

ialenrity and energy of our spiritual longing (' knock '). Such 

! nnporttinity appUes to ' every one,' whoever he be, and whatever the 

I QKnmstances which would seem to render his prayer specially diffi- 

I colt of answer. Though he feel that he has not and needs, he ' asks ; ' 

I tlwagh he have lost— time, opportunities, mercies — ^he 'seeks;' 

1 loongh the door seem shut, he ' knocks.' Thus the Lord is helper 

'o'every one;' but, as for us, let us learn the lesson from what we 

"'"Klyes would do in analogous circumstances. 

Nay, more than this, God will not deceive by the appearance of 
■IW is not reality. He will even give the greatest gift. The Para- 
"^ Klation is now not that of friends, but of father and son. If 
I™ »on asks for bread, will the father give what seems such, but 
u only n stone ? If he asks for a fish, will he tender him what 


looks sach, but is a serpent? If he seek an egg, will he hand to hiiK::^^ 
what broods a scorpion? The need, the hunger, of the child wi' ^ 
not, in answer to its prayer, receive at the Father's Hands, that whic::;-^ 
seems, but gives not the reality of satislaction — rather is poiao^^-^ 
Let UB draw the inference.. Such is our conduct — how much moji^ 
shall our heavenly Father give His Holy Spirit to them that a^ i 
Him. That gift will not disappoint by the appearance of what u m 
not reality ; it will not deceive either by the promise of what it don 
not give, or by giving what would prose &tal. As we follow Chriftl'g 
teaching, we ask for the Holy Spirit ; and the Holy Spirit, in leading 
us to Him, leads ns into all truth, to all life, and to what saiMa 
all need. 




(St. Lokc xii. 13-2! ; zui. 6-9; xiv. 16-3*.) 

■e Parables, which succcBsively follow in St. Luke's Gospel, 
erally be designated as those ' of wanuDg.' This holds 
true of the last two of them, which refer to the civil and 
siastical polity of Israel. Eath of the three Parables is set 
ttorical frame, having been spoken under circumstances 
ve occasion for such illustration. 

ie Parable of tJie foolish t-ich man.* It appears, that some • 
ig them that listened to Jeaue conceived the idea, that the 
' of the Great Rabbi of Nazareth might be used for his own 
urposes. Eridently, He had attracted and deeply moved 
es, or His interi)ORition would not have been sought; and, 
iridently, what He preached had made upon tliis man the 
>n, that he might possibly enlist Him as his champion. The 
tive evidence which it affords as regards the effect and the 
natter of Christ's preaching is exceedingly interesting. On 
r hand, Clirist had not only no legal authority for inter- 
ut the Jewish law of inheritance was so clearly defined, and, 
add, so just, that if this person had had any just or good 
lere could have been no need for appealing to Jesus. It 
lerefore, have been ' covetousness ' which prompted it — 
a wish to have, besides his own share as a younger brother, 
hat additional portion which, by law, came to the eldest son 
imily." ' iSuch an attempt for covetous purposes to make ' 

Bistht, however, arise when tlie into bii parM, and the eldest son had two 
iloiiLtfal, and then the iDheri- pjrls, or one third of the property. If 
d be (liviiled (Balia B. ii. 2). nine nons were left, the property waa 
e part of an eldest son was divided into ten parta, and the ^dest son 
in the following monnor. If had two parts, or a fifth of the property. 
!reIcft,tbcproi>erty was divided Bnt there were important limitations to 


use of the pure unselfish preaching of love, and to derive profit froc-^ 
His spiritual influence, accounts for the severity with which '^ri^, 
rejected the demand, although, as we judge, He would, under arr-^j. 
cireumBtanceB, have refased to interfere in purely civil disput^^. 
with which the established tribunals were sufficient to deaL 

All this accounts for the immediate reference of our Lord to 
eovetouenesB, the folly of which He showed by this almost aeU- 
evident principle, too often forgotten — that * not in tlie siq>er- 
abounding to any one [not in that wherein he has more than enouglij 
consisteth his life, from the things which he posseeseth.* ' In other 
words, that part of the things which a man posseaseth by which hii 
life is sustained, consists not in what is superabundant ; his life is 
sustained by that which he needs and uses ; the rest, the m^ 
abundance, forms no part of his life, and may, perhaps, never be d 
use to him. Why, then, be covetous, or long for more than we need? 
And this folly also involves danger. For, the love of these thingi 
will engross mind and heart, and care about them will drive ont 
higher thoughts and aims. The moral as regarded the Kingdom <^ 
God, and the warning not to lose it for thought of what ' periBhetb 
with the using,' are obvious. 

The Parable itself bears on all these points. It consists of two 
parts, of which the first shows the folly, the second the sin and 
danger, of that care for what is beyond our present need, which i» 
the characteristic of covetousnesa. The rich man is surveying hi* 
land, which is bearing plentifully — evidently beyond its former yield* 
since the old provision for storing the com appears no longer sufficient- 
It seems implied — or, we may at least conjecture — that this was no* 
only due to the labour and care of the master, but that he hs^ 
devoted to it his whole thought and energy. More than this, »"* 
seems as if, in the calculations which he now made, he looked in^^ 
the future, and saw there progressive increase and riches. As je*» 
the harvest was not reaped ; but he was already considering what ** 
do, reckoning upon the riches that would come to him. And so t'^ 
resolved to pull down the old, and build larger bams, where he woul* 
store his future possessions. From one aspect there would have be^* 
nothing wrong in an act of almost necessary foresight — only gie** 
folly in thinking, and speaking, and making plans, as if that we** 
already absolutely his which might never come to him at all, whi<?*' 

this, Tlins, tie law did not npply to a 
posthamous iiod, nor yet in regard to the 
mother's property, nor to Bay increase 
01 gain that might have acorncd since 


Rras still unreaped, and might be garnered long after he was dead, chap, 
Elis life was not sustained by that part of his possessions which xvi 
were the * superabounding.' But to this folly was also added sin. ' ' ' 
For, God was not in all his thoughts. In all his plans for the future — 
ind it was his folly to make such absolutely — he thought not of God. 
His whole heart was set on the acquisition of earthly riches — not on 
the service of God. He remembered not his responsibility ; all that 
he had, was for himself, and absolutely his own, to batten upon ; ^ Soul, 
thou hast much goods laid up for many years ; take thine ease, eat, 
diiiik, be merry.' He did not even remember, that there was a God 
Who might cut short his years. 

So had he spoken in his heart — proud, selfish, self-indulgent, 

God-forgetting — as he looked forth upon what was not yet, even in 

an inferior sense, his own, but which he already treated as such, and 

that in the most absolute sense. And now comes the quick, sharp, 

contrast, which is purposely introduced quite abruptly. * But God 

said unto him ' — not by revelation, nor through inward presentiment, 

but, with awful suddenness, in those imspoken words of fEict which 

cannot be gainsaid or answered: *Thou fool! this very night' — 

which follows on thy plans and purposings — ' thy soul is required of 

thee. But, the things which thou hast prepared, whose shall they 

be ? ' Here, with the obvious evidence of the folly of such state of 

mind, the Parable breaks off. Its sinfulness — nay, and beyond this 

negative aspect of it, the wisdom of righteousness in laying up the 

good treasure which cannot be taken firom us, appears in this con- 

cladbg remark of Christ — * So is he who layeth up treasure (trea- 

siireth) for himself, and is not rich towards God.' 

It was a barbed arrow, we might say, out of the Jewish quiver, 
^ directed by the Hand of the Lord. For, we read in the Talmud * ! s^**»S- 

, •' ' 163 o, Une 

^t a Babbi told his disciples, * Repent the day before thy death ; ' J^ *^ ^^ 

^i when his disciples asked him : * Does a man know the day of 

"18 death ? ' he repUed, that on that very ground he should repent 

*^^y, lest he should die to-morrow. And so would all his days be 

^JB of repentance. Again, the Son of Sirach wrote : ^ ' There is »» Ecdna. xi. 

7*t wazeth rich by his wariness and pinching, and this is the jyor- 

"^^ of his reward : whereas he saith, I have found rest, and now 

^ eat continually of my goods ; and yet he knoweth not what time 

"^ come upon him, and that he must leave those things to others, 

*^ddie,' But we sadly miss in all this the spiritual application which 

^^^ made. Similarly, the Talmud,*^ by a play on the last word oJer.shabb. 

\y>t\\ in the first verse of Psalm xlix., compares man to the weasel. 


BOOK which laboriously gathers and deposits, not knowing for whom, wl 
IV the Midrash * tells a story, how, when a Eabbi returned firom a 

• DebM-. R. where the host had made plans of storing his wine for a future 
p! 19 6, Sne ' siou, the Angel of Death appeared to him, sad for man, ^ since you aaj; 
and oQ^rards thus and thus shall we do in the future, while no one knoweth how 

soon he shall be called to die,' as would be the case with the host rf 
that evening, who would die after the lapse of thirty days. But once 
more we ask, where is the spiritual application, such as was made bj 
Christ ? So far from it, the Midrash adds, that when the Babbi 
challenged the Angel to show him the time of his own deaih,he 
received this reply, that he had not dominion over the like of him, 
since God took pleasure in their good works, and added to their dajB ! 
2. The special warning intended to be conveyed by the Parable 
xStl^ of the Barren Fig-tree ^ sufficiently appears from the context. Ab 
explained in a previous chapter,* the Lord had not only corrected the 
erroneous interpretation which the Jews were giving to certain recent 
national occurrences, but pointed them to this higher moral of aD 
such events, that, unless speedy national repentance followed, the 
whole people would perish. This Parable offers not merely an exem- 
plification of this general prediction of Christ, but sets before M 
what underlies it : Israel in its relation to Grod ; the need of re- 
pentance ; Israel's danger ; the nature of repentance, and its urgency; 
the relation of Christ to Israel ; the Gospel ; arid the final judgmeat 
on impenitence. 

As regards the details of this Parable, we mark that the fig-tree hfti 
been specially planted by the owner in the vineyard, as in the choice^ 

• KiLT.4 situation. This, we know, was not unusual.*' Fig-trees, as well 9^ 

palm and olive-trees, were regarded as so valuable, that to cca^ 
them down, if they yielded even a small measure of fruit, was popr^*^ 

• Bab* K. larly deemed to deserve death at the Hand of God.* Ancient JewiaJ- 

writings supply interesting particulars of this tree and its culture 

According to Josephua, in favoured localities the ripe fixiit hxmg (p^ 
J War ill. 10. the tree for ten months of the year,® the two barren months beiD-^ 

probably April and May, before the first of the three crops which :^ 
' Phaffffim, bore had ripened. The first figs ^ ripened towards the end of Jun^ 

sometimes earlier. The second, which are those now dried aa^^ 

exported, ripened in August ; the third, which were small and 
comparatively little value, in September, and often hung all wint^^? 
on the trees, A species (the Benoth Shudch) is mentioned, 
• sher. T. 1 which the fruit required three years for ripening.* The fig-tree 

' See ch. xiii. of this Book. 


rfgnnled as the most fruitful of all trees. ^ On account of its re- chap. 
peiited crops, it was declared not subject to the ordinance which xvi 
enjoined that fruit should be left in the comers for the poor.^ Its »sbev.i.4 
artificial inoculation was known.*^ The practice mentioned in the •'Pw^^ii.* 
Parable, of digging about the tree (jmyo)? and dunging it (p^nioX 
is fireqnently mentioned in Eabbinic writings, and by the same 
designations. Curiovislyy Maimonides mentions three years as the 
utmost limit within which a tree should bear fruit in the land 
of Israel.* Lastly, as trees were regarded as by their roots under- J^^^ ^ 
TniTiiTig and deteriorating the land,® a barren tree would be of threefold ^^;*^ 
disadvantage : it would yield no fruit ; it would fill valuable space, ^ *<«• 
which a firuit-bearer might occupy ; and it would needlessly deterio- 19 » 
rate the land. Accordingly, while it was forbidden to destroy fruit- 
bearing trees,^ it would be duty to cut down a * barren ' or * empty ' ' i>eiit. xx. 
tree ( Tkm aerak).^ 91 6 ; m a 

These particulars will enable us more fully to imderstand the '^"•^•* 
details of the Parable. Allegorically, the fig-tree served in the Old 
Testament as emblem of the Jewish nation** — ^in the Talmud, rather " Joei l 7 
as that of Israel's learning, hence of the leaders and representatives 
of the people.^ The vineyard is in the New Testament the symbol '^^^'ther^ 
of the Kingdom of God, as distinct from the nation of Israel.^ ^~ 
Thus fer, then, the Parable may be thus translated : God called Israel xi^ &^*^ 
aa a nation, and planted it in the most favoured spot : as a fig-tree ^^ ** ***' 
in His own Kingdom. ^ And He came seeking,' as He had every 
right to do, * fruit thereon, and found none/ It was the third year * 
that He had vainly looked for fiiiit, when He turned to His Vine- 
dresser — the Messiah, to Whom the vineyard is committed as its 
King — ^with this direction : * Cut it down — why doth it also deterio- 
rate the soil ? ' It is barren, though in the best position ; as a fig- 
tree it ought to bear figs, and here the best ; it fills the place which 
^ good tree might occupy; and besides, it deteriorates^ the soil 
(Bterally: ppipn riK T^no)* And its three years' barrenness has 
^bliahed (as before explained) its utterly hopeless character. Then 
^ is that the Divine Vinedresser, in His infinite compassion, pleads, 
^ with far deeper reality than either Abraham or Moses could 
'•^e entreated, for the fig-tree which Himself had planted and 
^ded, that it shoidd be spared * this year also,' * until then that I 
**ll dig about it, and dung it,' — till He labour otherwise than before, 

'^ ^^ot after three Tears, bat evidently ' Korapyti, Orimm renders the word, 

^*^« third year, when th "'^*" *" --— •» ^^- 

P ahoold have appeared. 

2^. ^'urd year, when the third year's enervo, tteriUm reddo. 


BOOK even by His Own Presence and Words, nay, by laying to its roots 
IV His most precious Blood. * And if then it bear fruit ' — here the text 

' ' ' abruptly breaks off, as implying that in such case it would, of coune, 
be allowed to remain ; ^ but if not, then against * the future (coming) 
year shalt thou cut it down.' The Parable needs no further com- 
mentation.^ In the words of a recent writer : ' * Between the tree 
and the axe nothing intervenes but the intercession of the Gardener, 
Who would make a last effort, and even His petition applies only to 
a short and definite period, and, in case it pass without result^ this 
petition itself merges in the proposal, *' But if not, then cut it down."' 
How speedily and terribly the warning came true, not only students 
of history, but all men and in all ages have been made to know. Of 
the lawfulness of a further application of this Parable to all kindred 
circumstances of nation, community, family, nay, even of individnils, 
it is not necessary to speak. 

^sti^ko 3, The third Parable of warning— that of the Oreat SwpptT^— 

refers not to the political state of Israel, but to their eodesiasticai 
8tatu8^ and their continuance as the possessors and representatives 
of the Kingdom of God. It was spoken after the return of Jesus 
from the Feast of the Dedication, and therefore carries us beyond the 
point in this history which we have reached. Accordingly, the 
attendant circumstances will be explained in the sequel. In regard 
to these we only note, how appropriately such a warning of Israel'^ 
spiritual danger, in consequence of their hardness of heart, misre-' 
presentation, and perversion of God's truth, would come at a Sabbatt*--* 
meal of the Pharisees, when they lay in wait against Him, and K^ 
first challenged their externalising of God's Day and Law to ik^^ 
subversion of its real meaning, and then rebuked the self-a8sertio»3j 
pride, and utter want of all real love on the part of these leaders o^ 

What led up to the Parable of * the Great Supper ' happened aft^^ 
these things : after His healing of the man with the dropsy in sigl** 
of them all on the Sabbath, after His twofold rebuke of their pe^^ 
version of the Sabbath-Law, and of those marked characteristics ^ 
Pharisaism, which showed how far they were from bringing forth froi"*^ 
worthy of the Kingdom, and how, instead of representing, they 

* fij rh fi4Woy. Ooehel points to a application, this is, of coarse, perfect>iy 

similar use of cis in St. Luke, i. 20 ; Acts fair ; but not in strict ez^^eeia To warn '^'^ 

xiii. 42. other and obvious objections, it were *^ 

' Dean Plvmptre regards the fig-tree introduce modem, Chnstian ideas, whS^^ 

as the symbol of a soul making fruitless would have been wholly unintelligible '^^ 

profession ; the vineyard as that of Israel. Christ's hearers. 

For homiletical purposes, or for practical ' Ooehel, 


-ejncsented the Kingdom, and were utterly tinfit ever to do other- 
irise.' The Lord liad spoken of making a feast, not for one's kindred, 
lOT for the rich— whether such outwardly, or mentally and spiritually * 
xom tiie standpoint of the Pharisees — but for the poor and affiicted. 
rhis would imply true spirituality, because that fellowship of giving, 
which descends to others in order to raise them as brethren, not 
condescends, in order to be raised by them as their Master and 
Superior.^ And He had concluded with these words : * And thou " 
shalt be blessed — because they have not to render back again to 
thee, for it shall be rendered back to thee again in the Resurrection 
rf the Juat.'" ; 

It was this last clause — but separated, in true Pharisaic spirit, 
from that which had preceded and indicated the motive — on which 
one of those present now conmiented, probably with a covert, per- 
haps a provocative, reference to what formed the sabject of Christ's 
ooDStant teaching : * Blessed whoso shall eat bread in the Kingdom 
of Heaven.' An expression this, which to the Pharisee meant the 
common Jewish expectancy of a great feast ' at the beginning of the 
MessiaDic Kingdom. So far he had rightly understood, and yet he 
bad entirely misunderstood, the words of Christ. Jesus had, indeed, 
referred to the future retribution of (not,/(>r) deeds of love, among 
vhich He had named as an instance, suggested by the circumstanceB, 
a kast for, or rather brotherly love and fellowship towards, the poor 
ud suffering. But although the Pharisee referred to the Messianic 
%, his words show that he did not own Jesus as the Messiah, 
"bether or not it was the object of his exclamation, as sometimes 
religions commonplaces or platitudes are in our days, to interrupt 
"* course of Christ's rebukes, or, as before hinted, to provoke Him 
toongoarded speech, must be left undetermined. What is chiefly 
^^vent is, that this Pharisee separated what Christ said about the 
'ils'angs of the first Besiurectiou from that with which He had 
Wwweted them — we do not say as their condition, but as logically 
'^ir moral antecedent: viz., love, in opposition to self-assertion 
^ Klf-seeking. The Pharisee's words imply that, like his class, 
**) A any rate, fully expected to share in these blessings, as a 
""ttsr of course, and because he was a Pharisee. Thus to leave 
^ Christ's anteceding words was not only to set them aside, bnt 
'** pervert His saying, and to place the blessedness of the future 
""the very opposite basis from that on which Christ had rested it. 

_^ npreaaion 'eating bread' i 
'"■"»ni Hebnbm, naed both in 


BOOK AccordiDgly, it vas to this man personally * that the Parable 

There can be no difficulty in understanding the main ideas noi/e^ 
lying the Parable. The man who made the 'Great Supper'' wm 
' He Who had, in the Old Testament, prepared ' a feast of fat thinp.'* 
The 'bidding many ' preceded the actual anuoimcement of the ibj 
and honr of the feast. We understand by it a preliminary intimk- 
tion of the feast then preparing, and a general invitation of the 
guests, who were the chief people in the city ; for, as we shall pre- 
sently see, the scene is laid in a city. This general announcement 
was made in the Old Testament institutions and prophecies, and the 
guests bidden were those in the city, the chief men — not the igno- 
rant and those out of the way, but the men who knew, and read, aad 
expounded these prophecies. At last the preparations were endedr 
and the Master eent out His Servant, not necessarily to be undo- 
stood of any one individual in particular — such as John the Ba^iA 
— but referring to whomsoever He would employ in His Service fir 
that purpose. It was to intimate to the persons formerly bidden, 
that everything was now ready. Then it was that, however differii^ 
in their special grounds for it, or eipressing it with more or Iw 
courtesy, they were all at one in declining to come. The feast, to 
which they had been bidden some time before, and to which thef 
had apparently agreed to come (at least, this was implied), Wt 
when actually announced as ready, not what they had expected, it 
any rate not what they regarded as more desirable than what tlKf 
had, and must give up in order to come to it. For — and this seoK 
one of the ])riQcipal points in the Parable — ^to come to that feast,** 
enter into the Kingdom, implies the giving up of something th* 
seems if not necessary yet most desirable, and the enjoyment ■ 
which appears only reasonable. Be it possession, business, ui 
pleasure {Stier), or the priesthood, the magistracy, and the peop* 
generally (St. Awguatine), or the priesthood, the Pharisees, and tin 
Scribes, or the Pharisees, the Scribes, and the self-righteonsly w* 
tuoos, with reference to whom we are specially to think of the thw^ 
fold excuse, the main point lies in this, that, when the time came, thej 
all reused to enter in, each having some valid and reasonable exeue- 
But the ultimate ground of their refusal was, that they felt no ml 
desire, and saw nothing attractive in such a feast ; had no itA 
reverence for the host ; in short, that to them it was not a feast Kb 
all, but something much less to be desired than what they had, and 
' Ratber tbopriMipal meal, which was towards ereuiiig. 


would have been obliged to give up, if they had complied with the chap. 
invitation. xvi 

Then let the feast — for it was prepared by the goodnees and ' 
liberality of the Host — be for those who were in need of it, and to 
whom it woold be a feast : the poor and those afflicted — the maimed, 
and blind, and lame, on whom those great citizens who had been 
first bidden wonld look down. This, with reference to, and in higher 
spiritual explanation of, what Christ had previously said about bid- 
ding such to our feasts of fellowship and love.* Accordingly, the |j^^*" 
Servant is now directed to * go out quickly into the (larger) streets 
ud the (narrow) lanes of the City ' — a trait which shows that the 
scene is laid in ' the City,' the professed habitation of G-od. The 
importaDce of this circumstance is evident. It not only explains who 
the first bidden chief citizens were, but also that these poor were the 
despised ignorant, and the maimed, lame, and blind — such as the 
piUicans and sinners. These are they in ' the streets ' and ' lanes ; * 
uid the Servant is directed, not only to invito, but to * bring them 
in,' u otherwise they might naturally shrink from coming to such 
a fesat But even so, ' there is yet room ; ' for the great Lord of the 
home has, in His great liberality, prepared a very great feast for 
Te:^ many. And so the Servant is once more sent, so that the 
Muter*! * house may he filled.' But now he is bidden to * go out,' 
cvtade the City, outside the Theocracy, 'into the highways and 
> lodges,' to those who travel along the world's great highway, or who 
^ We bllen down weary, and rest by its hedges ; into the busy, or 
sW weary, heathen world. This reference to the heathen world is 
tiw more apparent that, according to the Talmud,'' there were com- " a bmiu. 
fflody no hedges round the fields of the Jews. And this time the 
dmction to the Servant is not, as in regard to those naturally bash- 
fal outcasts of the City — who would scarcely venture to the great 
wwe— to ' bring them in,' but * constrain ' [without a pronoun] ' to 
Was in.' Not certainly as indicating their resistance and implying 
fciw,' but as the moral constraint of earnest, pressing invitation, 
Qnided with assurance both of the reality of the feast and of their 
vdeome to it. For, these wanderers on the world's highway had, 
befiwe the Servant came to them, not known anything of the Master 
of the house, and all was quite new and unexpected. Their being 
iDvited by a Lord Whom they had not known, perhaps never heard 
of befiwe, to a City in which they were strangers, and to a feast for 



BOOK which — as wayfarers, or as resting by the hedges, or else as worl 
IV within their enclosure — they were wholly unprepared, required spe 

■ ' ' urgency, * a constraining,' to make them either believe in it, or C4 
to it from where the messengers found them, and that without j 
paring for it by dress or otherwise. And so the house would 

Here the Parable abruptly breaks ofif. What follows are i 
words of our Lord in explanation and application of it to the co 
pany then present : ^ For I say unto you, that none of those n 
which were bidden shall taste of My Supper.' And this was the & 
answer to this Pharisee and to those with him at that table, and 
all such perversion of Christ's Words and misapplication of Go 
Promises as he and they were guilty of. 




A SHPLB pemsal. of the three Parables, grouped together in the CHAP. 
ofteenth chapter of St. Luke's Gospel, will convliice us of their con- ^^'^ 
nection. Although they treat of 'repentance,' we can scarcely call 
"lem ' The Parables of Kepentance ; ' for, except in the last of them, 
"'c aspect of repentance is subordinate to that of restoration, which 
'^ the moral effect of repentance. They are rather peculiarly G-ospel- 
■Parables ' of the recovery of the lost : ' in the first instance, through 
'ne unwearied labour ; in the second, through the anxious care, of 
fie owner ; and in the third Parable, through the never-ceasing love 
'f the Father. 

Properly to understand these Parables, the circumstances which 
^eited them must be kept in view. As Jesus preached the Gospel 
^ God's call, not to those who had, as they imagined, prepared them- 
^Wes for the Kingdom by study and good works, but as that to a 
"*or open, and a welcome &ee to all, * all the publicans and sinners 
"ere [constantly] drawing near to Him,' It has formerly been 
s^own,' that the Jewish teaching concerning repentance was quite 
"ther than, nay, contrary to, that of Christ. Theirs was not a Gospel 
'"> the lost : they had nothing to say to sinners. They called upon 
thetQ to ' do penitence,' and then Divine Mercy, or rather Justice, 
would have its reward for the penitent. Christ's Gospel was to the 
Iwt as such. It told them of forgiveness, of what the Saviour was 
<J'BBg, and the Father purposed and felt for them ; and that, not in 
tbe fiitnre and as reward of their penitence, but now in the imme- 
diate present. From what we know of the Pharisees, we can scarcely 
wonder that 'they were murmuring at Him, saying, This man re- 
eeiveth " sinners," and eateth with them.' Whether or not Christ 

' Bee Book in. cb. Tvii. 


BOOK had on this, as on other occasions,* joined at a meal with such ^p^ 
IV sons — which, of course, in the eyes of the Pharisees wonld hEve 

• stHatt. been a great aggravation of His offence — ^their charge was so &r 
true, that * this One,' in contrariety to the principles and practice of 
Babbinism, ^ received sinners ' as such, and consorted with them. 
Nay, there was even more than they charged Him with : He not 
only received them when they sought Him, but He sought them, » 
as to bring them to Him ; not, indeed, that they might remain 
* sinners,' but that, by seeking and finding them, they might be re- 
stored to the Kingdom, and there might be joy in heaven over them. 
And so these are truly Gospel-Parables, although presenting only 
some aspects of it. 

Besides their subject-matter, these three Parables have some 
other points in common. Two things are here of chief interest. 
They all proceed on the view that the work of the Father and of 
Christ, as regards Hhe Kingdom,' is the same; that Christ was doing 
the work of the Father, and that they who know Christ know tte 
Father also. That work was the restoration of the lost ; Christ had 
come to do it, and it was the longing of the Father to welcome the 
lost home again. Further, and this is only second in importance, 
the lost was still God's property ; and he who had wandered fiuthest 
was a child of the Father, and considered as such. And, although 
this may, in a wider sense, imply the general propriety of Christ in 
all men, and the universal Fatherhood of God, yet, remembering that 
this Parable was spoken to Jews, we, to whom these Parables not 
come, can scarcely be wrong in thinking, as we read them, ^th 
special thankfulness of our Christian privileges, as by Baptism nnm* 
bered among the sheep of His Flock, the treasure of His Possessiott* 
and the children of His Home.* 

In other particulars there are, however, differences, all the mcf^ 
marked that they are so finely shaded, in regard to the lostj the 
restorationj and its results. 

1. The Parable of the Lost Sheep. — At the outset we remark tha^ 
this Parable and the next, that of the Lost Drachm.^ are intended as 
an answer to the Pharisees. Hence they are addressed to them • 
*8t Luke < What man of you ? ' ^ * or what woman ? ' *^ just as His late rebnk^ 
to them on the subject of their Sabbath-cavils had been couched * 

XY. 4 

« Ter. 8 

» The only other alternative would turns on personal reflolve, but nms oot*^ 

seem, if one were to narrow the under- trary to the whole spirit of these P*'^^ 

lying ideas in a strictly Predestinarian bles, which is not of the ezclusiGD ^ 

sense. But this seems not only incom- any, but of the widest inclusion, 
patible with the third Parable, where all 

xiv. ft 


^Which of you shall have a son or an ox fallen into a well ? ' ' Not chap. 
D the last Parable, of the Lost Son^ in which He passed from de- xvii 
3nce, or rather explanation, of His conduct, to its higher reason, •st.Lnke^ 
bowing that He was doing the work of the Father. Hence, while 
1 the first Parable the element of comparison (with that which had 
ot been lost) appears in most detailed form, it is generalised in the 
SGond, and wholly omitted in the third. 

Other differences have to be marked in the Parables themselves. 
n the first Parable (that of the Lost Sheep) the main interest centres 
a the lost ; in the second (that of the Lost Drackm\ in the search ; 
1 the third, in the restoration. And although in the third Para- 
le the Pharisees are not addressed, there is the highest personal 
pplieation to them in the words which the Father speaks to the 
Ider son — an application, not so much of warning, as of loving 
orrection and entreaty, and which seems to imply, what otherwise 
^hese Parables convey, that at least these Pharisees had * murmured,' 
Qot BO much from bitter hostility to Christ, as from spiritual ignorance 
and misunderstanding. 

Again, these Parables, and especially that of the Lost Sheep, are 

evidently connected with the preceding series, that * of warnings.' 

The last of these showed how the poor, the blind, lame, and maimed, 

nay, even the wanderers on the world's highway, were to be the 

goeste at the heavenly Feast. And this, not only in the future, and 

after long and laborious preparation, but now, through the agency of 

the Saviour. As previously stated, Rabbinism placed acceptance at 

the end of repentance, and made it its wages. And this, because it 

knew not, nor felt the power of sin, nor yet the free grace of God. 

The Gospel places acceptance at the beginning of repentance, and as 

the free gift of God's love. And this, because it not only knows the 

power of sin, but points to a Saviour, provided of God. 

The Lost Sheep is only one among a hundred : not a very great 
^<*8. Yet which among us would not, even from the common 
natives of ownership, leave the ninety-and-nine, and go after it, all 
^e more that it has strayed into the wilderness ? And, to take these 
^Wisees on their own ground,* should not the Christ have done 
'^ewise to the straying and almost lost sheep of His own flock ? 
^^y, quite generally and to all time, is this not the very work of the 
^ood Shepherd,' and may we not thus, each of us, draw from it 

There is to some extent a Rabbinic wine, leaves the eleven to follow the 

^^•^el Parable (Ber. R. 86, ed. Warsh. twelfth into the shop of a Gentile, for 

WK^^ >, about the middle), where one fear that the wine which it bears might 

^ is driving twelve animals laden with be mixed there. 


BOOK precious comfort ? Ab we think of it, we remember that it is natwa! 
for the foolish sheep so to wander and stray. And we think not only 
of those sheep which Jewish pride and superciliousness had left to g& 
astray, but of our own natural tendency to wander. And we recall 
the saying of St. Peter, which, no doubt, looked back upon tlii« 
Pamhte : ' Ye were as sheep going astray ; but are now returned 
nnto the Siiepherd and Bishop of your souls.' ' It is not difficult In 
imagination to follow the Parabolic picture : how in its folly and 
ignorance the sheep strayed further and further, and at last was lost in 
solitude and among stony places ; how the shepherd followed and foand 
it, we-ary and footsore ; and then with tender care lifted it on his 
shoulder, and carried it home, gladsome that he had found the lost 
And not only this, but when, after long absence, he returned home 
with his found aheep, that now nestled close to its Saviour, he called 
together his friends, and bade them rejoice with him over the eret lost 
and now found treasure. It needs not, and would only diminish the 
pathos of this exquisite Parable, were we to attempt interpreting ita 
details. They apply wherever and to whatever they can be applied. 
Of these three things we think: of the lost sheep; of the Otwrf 
Shepherd, seeking, finding, bearing, rejoicing ; and of the aympathy 
of all who are truly friends — like-minded with Him. These, then, 
are the emblems of heavenly things. In heaven — oh, how difTerent 
the feeling from that of Pharisaism ! View ' the flock ' as do the 
Pharisees, and divide them into those who need and who need not 
repentance, the ' sinners ' and the ' righteou,s,' as regards man's 
application of the Law — does not this Parable teach us that in heaven 
there shall be joy over the ' sinner that repenteth ' more than over th* 
' ninety-and-nine ' ' righteous,' which ' have not need of repentance * • 
And to mark the terrible contrast between the teaching of Christ and 
that of the Pharisees ; to mark also, how directly from heaven moBt 
have been the message of Jesus, and how poor sinners must have felt 
it such, we put down in all its nakedness the message which Pharisaiso* 
brought to the lost. Christ said to them : ' There is joy in heaven 
over one sinner that repenteth.' Pharisaism said— and we quot** 
here literally — 'There is joy before God when those who provoke 
Him perish from the world.' '' 

2. In proceeding to the second Parable, that of the Lost Drachm 
we must keep in mind that in the first the danger of being lost axo^ 
from the natural tendency of the sheep to wander.' In the second 


Panble it is no longer our natural tendency to vkich our lose ia 
ittritmtable. The drachm (about 7^d. of our money) has been lost, 
utbe woman, its owner, was using or counting her money. The ~~ 
Ion u the more aensible, as it is one out of only ten, which constitute 
tin owner'B property. But it is aUll in the house — not like the 
dieep that had gone astray — only covered by the dust that is con- 
tiiuttllj accomulating &om the work and accidents around. Aud so 
H ii more and more likely to be buried under it, or swept into chinks 
udeonierB, and less and less likely to be found as time passes. But 
the woman lights a lamp, sweeps the house, and seeks diligently, (*W 
■hehaa found it. And then she calleth together tb(»e around, and 
liiiitbem rejoice with her over the finding of the lost part of her 
mKnions. And so there is joy in the presence of the Angels over 
*^ BJDner that repenteth. The comparison with others that need 
ttit gnch is now dropped, because, whereas formerly the sheep had 
^.yed — though from the frowardness of its nature — here the money 
^ (imply been lost, &Uen among the dust that accumulates — 
I*4ctiiiaUy, was no longer money, or of use ; became covered, hidden, 
^<1 was in danger of being for ever out of sight, not serviceable, as 
"• YVBs intended to be and might have been. 

We repeat, the interest of this Parable centres in the setvrck, and 
»>e Ion is caused, not by natural tendency, but by surrounding cir- 
cozxtstances, which cover up the bright silver, hide it, and render it 
QBeleu as regards its purpose, and lost to its owner. 

3. If it has already appeared that the two first Parables are not 

laerely a repetition, in different form, of the same thought, but 

n^veeent two different aspects and causes of the ' being lost ' — 

the enential difference between them appears even more clearly in 

the third Arable, that of the Lost Son. Before indicating it in 

detail, we may mark the similarity in form, and the contrast in 

tforit, of analogous Rabbinic Parables. The thoughtful reader will 

- we noted this even in the Jewish parallel to the first Parable,' 

\ »Iwre the reason of the man following the straying animal is 

[ ^Witaic fear and distrust, lest the Jewish wine which it carried 

■•Willi become mingled with that of the Gentiles. Perhaps, how- 

^^, this is a more apt parallel, when the Midrash* relates how, ' 

■W Moees fed the sheep of Jethro in the wilderness, and a kid had 

P^e utiay, he went after it, and found it drinking at a spring. As 

"■■ *ift Mpado] Kference to the com- oar A. V. ie spotioos). 

™™ in Ter. 10 (ver. 11 in the text of ' See Note on p. 206 of this chapter. 


BOOK tie thought it might be weary, he laid it on hia ehonldcr tof 
IV brought it back, when Crod said that, because he had Bfaown ptf 
' ' on the sheep of a man. He would give him His own sheep, Isiad, to 

• sbein.R.1, feed.* As a parallel to the second Parable, this may be quotedv 
p. 7 j^iboat gimilar in form, though very different in spirit, when a Rabbi notei,* 
' that, if a man had lost a 8da (drachm) or any other valuable inhii 

• house, he would light ever so many lights (nA'llB n03 nil] rnsa p^} 
till he had found what provides for only one hour in this woili 
How much more, then, should he search, as for hidden treasons!, ff 
the words of the Law, on which depends the life of this and of 

' uidr. on the world to come I ° And in regard to the high place which Cbiii 

oil. wuaiL, assigned to the repenting sinner, we may note that, according to th» 

the miiuiie" leading Kabbis, the penitents wonld stand nearer to Crod thanti» 

'perfectly righteous' (diid) D'pnx), since, in Is. IviL 19, peve 

was first bidden to those who had been a&r off, and then only to 

those near. This opinion was, however, not shared by all, and cot 

'Ber.M*. Rabbi maintained,^ that, while all the prophet* had only propheaed 

middle with reference to penitents (this had been the sole ol^ect of tlieir 

mission), yet, as regarded the * perfectly righteous,' * eye hath not seen, 

• u uiv. t God, beside Thee, what He hath prepared ' for them.* lastly, it 

may, perhaps, be noted, that the expression * there is joy before ffiffl' 
(i'IbS nntss? nrrn) is not uncommon in Jewish writings with referent 
to events which take place on earth. 

To complete this, it may be added that, besides illustrations, to 
which reference will be made in the sequel, Eabbinic traditiw 
supplies a parallel to at least part of the third Parable, that of tlit 
Lost Son. It tells us that, while prayer may sometimes find the gste 
of access closed, it is never shut against repentance, and it introdacea 
a Parable in which a king sends a tutor after his son, who, in bi^ 
wickedness, had left the palace, with this mess^e : ' Retnm, my wi 
to which the latter replied : ' With what face can I retnm ? 1 1*^*- 
ashamed!' On which the &tber sends this message: 'Myam,!^ 
there a son who is ashamed to retnm to his father — and shall tboC 
not retium to thy fether ? Thou shalt return.' So, continues th^ 
, j^ iij^ J., Midiasb, had God sent Jeremiah after Israel in the hour of thdr" 
I Debar. R. siu with the Call to retuTu,' and the comforting reminder that it nt 
Su'ao!**"' to their Father.* 

^nn^iai.con- lu the Faiable of ' the Lost Son,' the main interest ceni^res in Ma 
ffltmncaw reatoration. It is not now to the innate tendency of his nature, mg 
S^S^.' yet to the business and dust of the house that the lose is attiibnt- 
fiiB^miidta" able, but to the personal, iree choice of the individual. He doea not 


Any ; he does not &11 aside — he wilfully departs, and under aggra- ohap. 
rated ciicumstanceB. It ia the younger of two sons of a fether, xvii 
irho is equally loving to both, and kind even to hia hired servants, 
irhofle home, moreover, is one not only of sufficiency, but of snper- 
alnmdance and wealth. The demand which he makes for the 
' portion of property &Iling ' to him is founded on the Jewish Law of 
Inheritance.* Presumably, the father had only these two sons. The 
eldest would receive two portions, the younger the third of all 
movable property. The father could not have disinherited the 
ymmger son, although, if there had been several younger sons, he 
might have divided the property falling to them as he wished, pro- 
vided he ezprcEsed only his disposition, and did not add that such or 
nicb of the children were to have a less share or none at all. On 
the other hand, a man might, during his lifetime, dispose of all his 
property by gift, as he chose, to the disadvantage, or even the total 
loss, of the first-bom, or of any other children ; nay, he might give all 
to strangers.^ In snch cases, as, indeed, in regard to all such disposi- 
tions, greater latitude was allowed if the donor was regarded as 
duigerously ill, than if he was in good health. In the latter case a 
legal formality of actual seizure required to be gone through. With 
reference to the two eventualities just mentioned — that of diminishing 
or taking away the portion of younger children, and the right of gift 
—the Talmud speaks of Testaments,' which bear the name DiyaihUci, 
" in the New Testament.' These dispositions might be made either • Bai» b. 
in writing or orally. But if the share of younger children was to be Mood k. lu. 
diminished or taken away, the disposition must be made by a person 
fnomably neardeath {Skeehibhviera). But no one in good health 
(Ban) could diminish (except 1^ gift) the legal portion of a 
^RlDger son.* 

It thus appears that the younger son was, by law, fully entitled 
^ hiB ahare of the possessions, although, of course, he had no right 
''> daim it during the lifetime of his &ther. That he did so, might 
W been due to the feeling that, after all, he must make his own 
"iy in the world ; to dislike of the order and discipline of his home ; 
to estnngement from his elder brother; or, most likely, to a desire 

' Bwch.ivi. Nolcl. Heb. vii. 18, viii. 7-13, this BabbinJc 

Bit Id regard to sacli diainheriting principle: >A testament autkee void a 

<*.diJldien, even if they were bod, it was [previoiia] testament,' Jer. Baba B. 16 i, 

"'^Uiat the Spirit of Wisdom did not below. 

i It " '''*'° "''"' ™"de »nch dispofition ' The present Jewish Law o£ Inherit- 

'^ B. Tiii. 5). ance is fully given in Fattel, Mot. Babb. 

I , Ituj be interesting here to quote, Civil-Becht, vol. i. pp. 371-412. 
I '^onM^kni with the interpietation of 


BOOK for liberty and eDJoyment, with the latent belief that he would 
rv succeed well enough if left to himself. At any rate, his conduct, 
whatever his motives, was most heartless as regarded hia fethei, ud 
sinful as before God. Such a disposition could not prosper. The 
&ther had yielded to bis demand, and, to be as free aa possible {nm 
control and restraint, the younger son had gone into a Ear oounti;. 
There the natural sequences soon ensued, and bis property m 
wasted in riotous living. Regarding the demand for his inheritanee 
as only a secondary tiait in the Furable, designed, on the one hud, 
to bring out more forcibly the guilt of the son, and, on the othei^ 
the goodness, and afterwards the forgiveness, of the Father, we cm 
scarcely doubt that by the younger son we are to understand tiu»t 
' publicans and sinners ' against whose reception by, and fellowibip 
with, Christ the Pharisees had murmured. 

The next scene in the history has been misunderstood in tiie 
Direction, that it represents the young man's misery as the remit of 
Providential circumstances rather than of his own misdoing. To 
begin with, he would not have been driven to such straits in the 
famine, if he had not wasted his substance. Again, the main object 
is to show, that absolute liberty and indulgence of sinful desirea sod 
pHRsions ended in anything but happiness. The Providence of God 
had an important part in this. Far more frequently are folly ud 
sin punished in the ordinary course of Providence than by Bpecnl 

• stLukt judgments — indeed, it is contrary to the teaching of Christ,' andil 
would lead to an unmoral view of life, to regard such direct interpo- 
sitions as necessary, or to substitute them for the ordinary goven- 
ment of God, Similarly, for our awakening also we are freqnentl? 
indebted to what is called the Providence, but what is really the 
manifold working together of the grace, of God. And so we 6iA 
special meaning in the occurrence of this limine. That, in his not* 
* he clave ' (JkoXXij^) to one of the citizens of that country,' Beoa« 
to indicate that the man had been unwilling to engage the Hio-' 
pated young stranger, and only yielded to his desperate importuniy- 
Thia also explains how he employed him in the lowest meni»* 
service, that of feeding swine. To a Jew, there was more tlft** 
degradation in this, since the keeping of swine (although perfup* 
the ownership rather than the feeding) was prohibited to Isradil^* 

'BkisK. under a curse.*" And even in this demeaning service he was bo er** 

rehwnotio entreated, that for very hunger he would fain have ' filled hia beD^ 
It Id (be ' JO 

lodM. " ' Morelitcrailr.'wMgloed.' TheLXX. ' This pmhibition tnu attribuUd f^ 

*"*-> IniDBUtothDslheHebKWQi^'toclasve.' the Maccnbeaa Sanhediin. 


*with the carob-pods that the swine did eat/ Yet the same harsh- chap. 
mess, which had sent him to such employment, here met him on the xvu 
part of all the people of that country : * and no man gave unto him,' "" ' 
even sufficient of such food. What perhaps gives additional mean- 
ing to this description is a Jewish soying : ^ When Israel is reduced 
to the carob-tree, they become repentant.* • * s/ot** ^ 

It was this pressure of extreme want which first showed to the w^pJr pp* 
younger son the contrast between the country and the circumstances 
to which his sin had brought him, and the plentiful provision of the 
home he had left, and the kindness which provided bread enough 
and to spare for even the hired servants. There was only a step 
between what he said, ^ having come into himself,' and his resolve 
to return, though its felt difficulty seems implied in the expression : 
* I will arise.' Nor would he go back in the hope of being reinstated 
in his position as son, seeing he had already received, and wasted in 
sin, his pcnrtion of the patrimony. All he sought was to be made as 
one of the hired servants. And, alike from true feeling, and to show 
that this was all his pretence, he would preface his request by the 
confession, that he had sinned * against heaven' — a frequent He- 
braism foir * against God ' * — and in the sight of his father, and hence 
could no longer lay claim to the name of son. The provision of the 
son he had, as stated, already spent ; the name he no longer deserved. 
This &vour only would he seek, to be as a hired servant in his 
other's house, instead of in that terrible, strange land of famine 
and harshness. 

But the result was far other than he could have expected. When 
^e read that, * while he was yet afar off, his father saw him,' we 
n«i8t evidently understand it in the sense, that his father had been 
dways on the outlook for him, an impression which is strengthened 
'ythe later command to the servants to * bring the calf, the fatted 
^e,*^ as if it had been specially fattened against his return. As he "^^j^^^ 
'^^ saw him, * he was moved with compassion, and he ran, and he 
'^D on his neck, and covered him with kisses.' * Such a reception 

^^^e fruit of the caiob-tree is re- food of ascetics, such as Cbanina b. Dosa, 

?!^^ in Jewish and heathen literature Sec. (Ber. 17 b), and Simon b. Jochai 

r^ poorest, and, indeed, only fit for (Shabb. 83 b% even as it had been that of 

^**^^. See WeUtein ad loc. Accord- John the Baptist. Its leaves seem on 

^ ^ Jewish icleas, it took seventy years occasions to have been used as writing- 

g"?*^ the carob-tree bore fruit (Bechor. material (Tos. Gitt. 2). 

aJJ^* It is at least donbtfol whether the * Other terms were also substituted 

^ ^ menticmed in the Old Testament (such as « Might,* * Mercy,* &c.)--with the 

]^^H33 of 2 Sam. ▼. 23, 24). In the view of avoiding needless mention of the 

/p^^liafa it is frequently referred to Deity. 

Y^^^ L 6 ; Shabb. xziv. 2 ; Baba B. U. > Or < kissed him much,' tcvrvf^iKnirtv 

^' Its fxnit seems to have been the aln6¥. 


BOOK rendered the purposed request, to be made as one of the hired 
IV servants, impossible — and its spurious insertion in the text of our 
• Ycr.h ' Authorised Version * affords sad evidence of the want of spiritual tact 
and insight of early copyists. The father's love had anticipated his 
confession, and rendered its self-spoken sentence of condemnation 
impossible. ^ Perfect love casteth out fear,' and the hard thoughts 
concerning himself and his deserts on the part of the returning 
sinner were banished by the love of the father. And so he only 
made confession of his sin and wrong — not now as pre£Eice to the 
request to be taken in as a servant, but as the outgoing of a humbled, 
grateful, truly penitent heart. Whom want had humbled, thought had 
brought to himself, and mingled need and hope had led a suppliant 
servant — a Mher's love, which anticipated his confession, and did not 
even speak the words of pardon, conquered, and so morally begat a 
second time as his son. It deserves special notice, as marking the 
absolute contrast between the teaching of Christ and Sabbimsm, 
^^M^, cd. that we have in one of the oldest Babbinic works ^ a Parable exactly 
p-sfta the reverse, in which the son of a ftiend is redeemed firom bondage, 
not as a son, but as a slave, that so obedience might be demanded of 
him. The inference drawn is, that the obedience of the redeemed is 
not that of filial love of the pardoned, but the enforcement of the claim 
of a master. How otherwise in the Parable and teaching of Christ! 
But even here the story of love has not come to an end. They 
have reached the house. And the father would not only restore the 
son, but convey to him the evidence of it, and he would do so befflJ«> 
and by the servants. The three tokens of wealth and position are 
to be furnished him. * Quickly ' the servants are to bring forth the 
* stola,' the upper garment of the higher classes, and that ' the first 
— the best, and this instead of the tattered, coarse raiment of the 
foreign swineherd. The finger-ring for his hand, and the sandab 
for his unshod feet, similarly indicated the son of the house— and 
still farther to mark it, the servants were not only to bring these 
articles, but themselves to ' put them on ' the son, to own his master* 
ship. And yet further, the calf, * the fatted one ' for this very 
occasion, was to be killed, and there was to be a joyous feast, for * thia 
his son * was dead, and is come to life again ; was lost, and is found. 

Thus far for the reception of * publicans and sinners,' and all i** 
every time whom it may concern. Now for the other aspect of tb^ 
history. While this went on, so continues the Parable, the elde*^ 

* Thus the text correctly. As it seems as Ooehel remarks, they would acaitel^^ 

to me, the words do not, in the first place, have, in that sense, been addressed t^^ 

point to a moral change. Dogmatically, the servants, 
the inference is no doubt correct, but. 



trother was still in the field. On his return home, he inquired of chap. 
-^ servant the reason of the festivities which he heard going on xvii 
"within. Informed that his younger brother had come, and the calf 
liHig prepared against a feast had been killed, because bis father 
had recovered him ^ safe and sound,' he was angry, would not go in, 
and even refused the request to that efifect of the father, who had 
^come out for the purpose. The harsh words of reproach with which 
he set forth his own apparent wrongs have only one meaning : his 
father had never rewarded him for his services. On the other hand, 
as soon as * this ' his * son ' — whom he will not even call his brother 
—had come back, notwithstanding all his disservice, he had made a 
feast of joy ! 

Bat in this very thing lay the error of the elder son, and, per 
amsequence, the fatal mistake of Pharisaism. The elder son re- 
garded all as of merit and reward, as work and return. But it is 
not 80. We mark, first, that the same tenderness which had welcomed 
the returning son, now met the elder brother. He spoke to the 
mgry man, not in the language of merited reproof, but addressed 
lumbvingly as ' son,' and reasoned with him. And then, when he 
hid shown him his wrong, he would fain recall him to better 
feeling by telling him of the other as his * brother.' * But the main ^f -3^"^ 
point is this. There can be here no question of desert. So long as 
the son is in His Father's house, all that is the Father's He gives in 
Hia great goodness to His child. But this poor lost one — still a son 
*>d a brother — he has not got any reward, only been taken back again 
py a Father's love, when he had come back in the deep misery of 
Ms felt need. This son, or rather, as the other should view him, 
^ * brother,' had been dead, and was come to Ufe again ; lost, and 
^ found. And over this * it was meet to make merry and be glad,' 
^ to murmur. Such murmuring came from thoughts of work and 
f^Jy wrong in themselves, and foreign to the proper idea of Father 
*Hi gon ; such joy, firom a Father's heart. The elder brother's were 
the thoughts of a servant : * of service and return ; ,the yoimger 
*^er'8 was the welcome of a son in the mercy and everlasting love 
^ » Father. And this to us, and to all time ! 

.It may be worth mentioniDg a some- 
JJJ^tiimilar parable in Bemidb. R. 16 (ed. 
JJ^^. p. S2 ft, near beginning). Refer- 
^^ is made to the fact, that, according 
I^Nnmb. vii, aU the twelve tribes 
^l^^^^igfal gifto, except Levi. Upon that 
r^llowB in Numb. viii. the consecration of 
^^ licvitee to the service of the Lord. 
"^IM Mkhaah likens it to a feast which a 

king had made for all the people, but to 
which he does not bid his special friend. 
And while the latter seems to fear that 
this exclusion may imply disfavour, the 
king has a special feast for his friend 
only, and shows him that while the 
common meal was for all, the special 
feast is for those he specially loves. 




ALxnouGO widely differing in their object and teaching, the last 
group of Parables spoken during this part, of Christ's Ministry are at 
least outwardly, if not inwardly, connected by a leading thoi^ht. 
The word by which we would string them together is Righieovanftf. 
There are three Parables of the (7nrighteoue : the Unrighteous 
Steward, the Unrighteous Owner, and the Unrighteous Disftenaer, or 
Judge. And these are followed by two other Parables of the SAf- 
righteous: Self-right«ou8ness in its Ignorance, and its dangers as 
regards oneself; and Self-righteousness in its Harshness, and 
dangers as regards others. But when this outward connection 
been marked, we have gone the utmost length. Much more 
is the internal connection between some of them. 

We note it, first and chiefly, between the two first Parable 
Recorded in the same chapter,* and in the same connection, the:; 
were addressed to the same audience. True, the Parable of tf:»' 
JjTiguet Stefvard was primarily spoken 'to His disciples,''' that 
Dives and Lazarus to the Pharisees." But then the audience 
Christ at that time consisted of disciples and Pharisees, And th< 
two classes in the audience stood in |)eculiar relation to each othi&'' 
which is exactly met in these two Parables, so that the one may 
said to have sprung out of the other. For, the ' disciples,' to wh<^' , 
the first Parable was addressed, were not primarily the Apostles, 1**^ 
those ' publicans and sinners ' whom Jesus had received, to the gr^^ 
displeasure of the Pharisees.'* Them He would (each concerning tl^ 
Mamon of unrighteousnesB, and, when the Pharisees sneered ^ 
that teaching, He would turn it against them, showing how, benea-* , 
that self-justification,' which made them forget that now the Kii»^ 
dom of God was opened to all,' and imagine that they 

hey were fa^^ 


sole vindicators of a Law* which in their everyday practice they CHAP, 
notorionsly broke,^ there lay as deep sin and as great alienation from xvra 
God as that of the sinners whom they despised. Theirs might not • y«r. i? 
be the llamon o/, yet it might be that for unrighteousness ; and, * ^®^- ^® 
while they sneered at the idea of such men making of their Mamon 
fidends that would receive them into everlasting tabernacles, them- 
selves would experience that their neglect of using it for God, and 
their employment only for self of such Mamon as was theirs, to- 
gether with their bearing towards what they regarded as wretched, 
sore-covered Lazarus, forsaken and starving at their very doors, 
would end in a terrible adjustment before God. 

It will have been observed, that once more we lay special stress 

on the historical connection and the primary meaning of the 

FuaUes. We would read them in the light of the circumstances 

in which they were spoken — as addressed to a certain class of 

hearersy and as referring to what had just passed. The historical 

application once ascertained, the general lessons may afterwards be 

&I^ed to the widest range. This historical view will help us to 

^niderstand the introduction, connection, and meaning, of the two 

IWbles which have been described as the most difficult : those of 

^ Unjust Steward,^ and of Dives and Lazarus. 

At the outset we must recall, that they were addressed to two 

^'iflEerent classes in the same audience. In both the subject is Un- 

^^ktsousness. In the first, which is addressed to the recently 

®^*iiverted publicans and sinners, it is the Unrighteous Steward, 

^"^^Idng unrighteous use of what had been committed to his admi- 

'^^^liation by his Master ; in the second Parable, which is addressed 

^ the self-justifying, sneering Pharisees, it is the Unrighteous 

^•Osgessor, who uses only for himself and for time what he has, while 

*^^ leaves Lazarus, who, in his view, is wretched and sore-covered, 

^ starve or perish, unheeded, at his very door. In agreement with 

^^« object, and as suited to the part of the audience addressed, the 

^^^ Parable points a lesson, while the second furnishes a warning. 

*^ the first Parable we are told, what the sinner when converted 

^^^Juld learn from his previous life of sin ; in the second, what the 

'^If-deceiving, proud Pharisee should learn as regards the life which 

r^ him seems so fair, but is in reality so empty of God and of love. 

^ iidlows — and this is of greatest importance, especially in the 

^^ilba reader who wishes to see the mentaries, and especiaUy to Archbishop 
i^Sa«it litmn and interpretations of this Trefieh't Notes on the Parables (13th ed.)» 
If leferred to the modem com- pp. 427-462. 





• TT. 10-13 
« TV. 1-8 

*ver. 8 


interpretation of the first Parable — that we must not expect to 
spiritual equivalents for each of the persons or incidents introduce«ai«.^ 
In each case, the Parable itself forms only an illustration of 
lessons, spoken or implied, which Christ would convey to ihe o 
and the other class in His audience* 

I. The Parable of ike Unjust Steward. — In accordance with tie 
canon of interpretation just laid down, we distinguish — 1. The illu^ 
trative Parable/ 2. Its moral.^ 3. Its application in the combina- 
tion of the moral with some of the features of the Parable.® 

1. The illustrative Parable,^ This may be said to conveige 
to the point brought out in the concluding verse :^ the prodence 
which characterises the dealings of the children of this irarld 
in regard to their own generation — or, to translate into our own 
phraseology the Jewish forms of expression, the wisdom with wbich 
those who care not for the world to come choose the means moat 
effectual for attaining their worldly objects. It is this prudence by 
which their aims are so effectually secured, aTid it alonej which ift 
set before * the children of light,' as that by which to learn. And 
the lesson is the more practical, that those primarily addressed had 
hitherto been among the men of this world. Let them learn from 
the serpent its wisdom, and from the dove its harmlessness ; froiO- 
the children of this world, their prudence as regarded their genent— " 
tion, while, as children of the new light, they must remember th^ 
higher aim for which that prudence was to be employed. Thus woul^^ 
that Mamon which is * of unrighteousness,' and which certainly * fail-^' 
eth,' become to us treasure in the world to come — welcome us ther^^^ 
and, so far from * failing,' prove permanent — welcome us in ever*-^ 
lasting tabernacles. Thus, also, shall we have made friends of th 
' Mamon of unrighteousness,' and that, which from its nature m 
fail, become eternal gain — or, to translate it into Talmudic phrase '^ 
ology, it will be of the things of which a man enjoys the interest i 
this world, while the capital remains for the world to come. 

It cannot be difficult now to understand the Parable. Its obj 
is simply to show, in the most striking manner, the prudence of ^ 
worldly man, who is unrestrained by any other consideration than th^*-* 
of attaining his end. At the same time, with singular wisdom, tt^ ^ 
illustration is so chosen as that its matter (materia), * the Mam 
of unrighteousness,' may serve to point a life-lesson to those new 
converted publicans and sinners, who had formerly sacrificed all 
the sake, or in the enjoyment of, that Mamon. All else, such 
the question, who is the master and who the steward, and such lit 


%"v^e dismiss, since the Parable is only intended as an illustration of c'IIat. 
t: lie lesson to be afterwards taught. xviu 

The connection between this Parable and what the Lord had 

jprevioufily said concerning returning sinners, to which our remarks 

l3ave already pointed, is further evidenced by the use of the term 

^ waating' {StaaKopTri^av), in the charge against the steward, just as 

t^lie prodigal son had * wasted ' {ZtsaKopinas) his substance.* Only, ]^'j J*^*® 

in the present instance, the property had been entrusted to his 

-.^ulmixiistration. As regards the owner, his designation as ^rich' 

aeems intended to mark how large was the property committed to 

tihe steward. The ^ steward ' was not, as in St. Luke xii. 42-46, a 

slave^ bnt one employed for the administration of the rich man's 

affidrs, subject to notice of dismissal.^ He was accused — the term ^5f•J'?® 

implying malevolence, but not necessarily a fdse charge — not of 

ft^tid, bat of wasting, probably,by riotous living and carelessness, his 

'^Ulster's goods. And his master seems to have convinced himself 

^iat the charge was true, since he at once gives him notice of dis- 

'I'UBaL The latter is absolute, and not made dependent on the 

^coomit of his stewardship,' which is only asked as, of course, 

Necessary, when he gives up his office. Nor does the steward either 

tex^j the charge or plead any extenuation. His great concern rather 

^*^ during the time still left of his stewardship, till he has given up 

*^ accounts, to provide for his future support. The only alternative 

*^Care him in the future is that of manual labour or mendicancy. 

^^'t, for the former he has not strength ; from the latter he is 

'^"tiained by shame. 

Then it is that his * prudence ' suggests a device by which, after 

"^ dismissal, he may, without begging, be received into the houses 

^^ "those whom he has made friends. It must be borne in mind, 

^•^^t he is still steward, and, as such, has full power of dis^josing of 

"*s master's affairs. When, therefore, he sends for one after another 

^ lis master's debtors, and tells each to alter the sum in the bond, 

"^ does not suggest to them forgery or fraud, but, in remitting part 

^^ the debt — whether it had been incurred as rent in kind, or as 

^^ price of produce purchased — he acts, although imrighteously, yet 

*^Hctly within his rights. Thus, neither the steward nor the debtors 

^^d be charged with criminality, and the master must have been 

^ck with the cleverness of a man who had thus secured a futiu-e 

pi^vigiQu by making friends, so long as he had the means of so 

*^ (ere his Mamon of unrighteousness failed). 

A few archaeological notices may help the interpretation of details. 




• Ant Tiii 2. 
9 ; comp. Ix. 

War II. «. S 

•Life, 18 


From the context it seems more likely, that the * bonds,' or nih^^ 
* writings,' of these debtors were written acknowledgments of deb^^ 
than, as some have supposed that they were, leases of farms. Tl^ * 
debts over which the steward variously disposed, according as 1»-^ 
wished to gain more or less fevour, were considerable. In the fir^*^ 
case they are stated as * a hundred Both of oil,' in the second as ' ^^ 
hundred Cor of wheat.' In regard to these quantities we have tk ^ 
preliminary diflSculty, that three kinds of measurement were in uat^ 
in Palestine — that of the * Wilderness,' or, the original Mosaic; tha'*^ 
of * Jerusalem,' which was more than a fifth larger ; and that of SeF*"-" 
phoris, probably the common Gralilean measurement, which, in tnrcm^ 
was more than a fifth larger than the Jerusalem measure.^ To 
more precise, one Galilean was equal to ^ * Wilderness ' 
Assuming the measurement to have been the Galilean, one Baik ^ 
would have been equal to an Attic MetreteSy or, about 39 Hires. Otm 
the other hand, the so-called * Wilderness measurement ' would eo i pg 
spond with the Eoman measures, and, in that case, the ^ BcUk* woolcl 
be the same as the Amphora, or amount to a little less than SC 
litres.^ The latter is the measurement adopted by Josephus.** In 
the Parable, the first debtor was owing 1 00 of these * Bath,' ar, 
according to the Galilean measiurement, about 3,900 litree of oiL. 
regards the value of a Bath of oil, little information can be 
from the statements of Josephus, since he only mentions pri€?e» 
under exceptional circumstances, either in particularly plentifol 
years,^ or else at a time of war and siege.*^ In the former, an 
Amphora, or 26 litres of oil seem to have fetched about 9d. ; but i^ 
must be added, that, even in such a year, this represents a rare stroke 
of business, since the oil was immediately afterwards re-sold for 

* See JTerz/eld, Handelsgesch. pp. 18^ 
185. I have proceeded on bis computa- 
tion. I am bound to add, tbat tbere are 
few subjects on wbicb the statements of 
writers are more inconsistent or confused. 
Thus, I have not succeeded in clearly 
understanding the statements on this 
subject in Conder*t Handbook, and where 
I do understand, I certainly cannot agree 
with them. The statements in the text 
are derived from Jewith sources. 

« The writer in Smith's Bibl. Diet., vol. 
ill. p. 1740 hf is mistaken in saying tbat 
* the Bath is the largest of liquid mea- 
sures.* According to Szek. zlv. 11, the 
Chomer or Cbr»ten bath or ephah, was 
equaUy applied to liquid and dry mea- 
sures. The Bath (one-tenth of the 
Chomer or Cor) » three aeah ; the seah * 

two bin ; the bin ■■ twelve log ; the log** 
space of six eg^s. Further, one thlrb^* 
secondth of a log is reckoned equal to ^ 
large (table), one sixty-fourth to a sm*** 
(dessert), spoon. 

» This difference between the • WMer^ . 
ness,' or 'Mosaic,' and the *Qalileaa ' 

measure removes the difficulty (raised V 
Theniiis) about the capacity of t^^ 
* brazen sea * in Solomon's Temple (1 Kio^^ 
vii. 23, 26). The Bath should be dkat^ 
lated, not according to the Oalil*^^^ 
( « Metrites « about thirty-nine litrts^-^ 
but according to the • Wilderness ' l ao j ^^^ ^ 

sure (a amphora « about twenty-sL-^ 


* The reading in Ant. zr. 9. 2: *' 
Attic Medimni,' is evidently a oopjiit') 
error for * Metrdtai.* 


eight times the amount, and this — 39. for half an Amphora of about chap. 
13 litres — wonld probably represent an ezceptionallj high war-price. xvm 
Ihe &ir price for it would probably have been 9d. For the Mishnah 
iiif(«iii& TIB, that the ordinary * earthenware casks ' (the QerahK) held 
«ach 2 Seah, w 48 Log, or aboat 26 litres.' Again, according to *Thariin.i, 
a notice in the Talmud,^ 100 such * casks,' or, 200 Seah, were sold for bja,.Brt» 
10 (presumably gold) dinars, or 250 silver dinars, eqnal to aboat tl. ^i'-* 
lOs. of onr money. And as the BcUk ( = 3 Seah) held a third more 
than one of those ' casks,' or Qerahin, the value of the 100 Bath 
of oil would probably amount to about \0l. of our money, and the 
temisaion of the steward, of course, to 51. 

The second debtor owed ' a hundred Cor of wheat ' — that is, in 
dry measure, ten times the amount of the oil of the first debtor, 
rince the Cot was ten Ephah or Bath, the Epkah three Seah, the 
Sw4 six Kab, and the Kab four Log. This must be borne in mind, 
nnee the dry and the fiuid measures were precisely the same; and 
here, also, their threefold computation (the ' Wilderness,' the * Jeru- 
aleiQ,' and the ' Galilean ') obtained. As regards the value of wheat, 
w learn* that, on an average, four Seah of seed were expected to 'J^Sj''* 
prodnce one Cor — that is, seven and ahalf times their amount; and ^J^"" 
that a field 1,500 cubits long and 50 wide was expected to grow a 
Cw. The average price of a Gor of wheat, bought uncut, amounted 
'oibont 25 dinars, or ISs. Striking an average between the lowest 
priott mentioned ^ and the highest,* we infer that the price of 3 Seah * fSL?"- 
* an Ephah would be from two shillings to half-a-erown, and accord- I^'i ... 
••"tfyof aCtor (or 10 Ephah) from 20 to 25 shillings (probably this is .B»b.B. 
•^ther more than it would cost). On this computatioD the hundred *' " 
^ vonld represent a debt of from 1001. to 125!., ahd the remission 
°f tie steward (of 20 Cor), a sum of from 201. to 251. Comparatively 
^iQallu these sums may seem, they are in reality large, remembering 
^he «Uae of money in Palestine, which, on a low computation, would 
"^ fire times as great as in our own country. ' These two debtors are 
^^^^f mentioned as instances, and so the unjust steward would easily 
"^"^ for himself friends by the ' Mamon of unrighteousness,' the 
^^ Mamon^ we may note, being derived from the Syriac and Rab- 
^Wc word of the same kind (tioo, from po^'iD-PiiO, to apportion).' 
Another point on which acquaintance with the history and habits 

jj This will appear from the cost of from joet- H^ says: vti ridet^tr, dedn- 

"''K, labonr, ka. cendom ; ridrtirr, but certainlj not fit. 

^ The word Bhonlil be written with one Bvxttn/ (_b. v.) lar^ly. but not very satis- 

■ See ertwnt a. v. fsctorily, rtiecuBseB iis etymology. Tlio 

Tnwai (after Dntiv*') derives it view in the teit has the BBOction of Zfy. 


BOOK of those times throws light is, how the debtors could so easily alt^^ 
IV the sum mentioned in their respective bonds. For, the text impK^^* 
' "' that this, and not the writing of a new bond, is intended ; since 
that case the old one would have been destroyed, and not given 
for alteration. It would be impossible, within the present limit^^ 
to enter fully on the interesting subject of writing, writing-mat^?— 
rials, and written documents among the ancient Jews.* Suffice it tx> 
give here the briefest notices. 

The materials on which the Jews wrote were of the most div«r« 
kind : leaves, as of olives, palms, the carob, &c. ; the rind of tim.^ 
pomegranate, the shell of walnuts, &c. ; the prepared skins of 
animals (leather and parchment) ; and the product of the papyrus 
used even before the time of Alexander the Great for the manufiuE?- 
ture of paper, and known in Tabnudic writings by the same name, 


• Sot. 49 ft Papir * or A'pipeir^ but more frequently by that of Najjar — ^probably 
TrsSiS^ie fr^^ ^^® stripes {Nirin) of the plant of which it was made.* Bvzt 

what interests us more, as we remember the ^ tablet ' (invaK&iofw^) 

• St. Luke I. on which Zacharias wrote the name of the future Baptist,® is the cix* 

cumstance that it not only bears the same name, Pinakes or PinkeaOf 
but that it seems to have been of such common use in Palestine. It 
consisted of thin pieces of wood (the Luach) fastened or strung 
Cher. xxiv. together. The Mishnah ^ enumerates three kinds of them : those 
where the wood was covered with papyrus,' those where it was 
covered with wax, and those where the wood was left plain to be 
written on with ink. The latter was of difiFerent kinds. Black ink 
was prepared of soot (the Deyo\ or of vegetable or mineral substances.^ 
Grum Arabic and Egyptian {Kumos and Kuma) and vitriol {Kan^ 

• shaM).xii. kanthom) seem also to have been used® in writing. It is cmioas 
'n.B. to read of writing in colours and with red ink or Sikray^ and even of 

a kind of sympathetic ink, made from the bark of the ash, and brought 
« jer. shabb. out by a mixturc of vitriol and gum.«f We also read of a gold-ink, 9S 
the middle that iu which the copy of the Law was written which, according to 

the legend, the High-Priest had sent to Ptolemy Philadelphia tof 
\^i^' ^^® purpose of being translated into Greek by the LXX.** Butth^ 

* I must here refer generally to the M. 66 h,) 

monograph of Low (Graphische Bequis. u. ■ So Sachg, Beitr. z. Spraoh a. Altcrt^* 

Erzeugn., 2 Tols.) Its statements require, Forsch. vol. i. p. 166; but Lhf (u. •- ' 

however, occasionally to be rectified. See seems of different opinion, 

also Hertfeld^ Handelsgesch. pp. 113 &c., * The Beyo seems to have been a ^'^X 

and Note 17. substance which was made into 

' ZcHV, u. 8. vol. i. pp. 97, 98. It is ink. Ink from gall-nuts appears to 

curious to leam that m those days also of later invention, 
waste paper went to the grocer. (Baba 



Talmnd prohibits copies of the Law in gold letters,* or more probably 
Inhere the Divine Name was written in gold letters.*^ ^ In writing, 
a pen, KolemoSj made of reed (Kanceh *) was used, and the refer- 
eaoe in an Apostolic Epistle ® to writing * with ink and pen ' (Sict 
\itkcan>s icaX KaXdfiov) finds even its verbal counterpart in the Mid- 
laah, which speaks of MUanin and Kolemin (ink and pens). Indeed, 
the public * writer ' — a trade very common in the East ^ — went about 
witii a Kolemoa^ or reed-pen, behind his ear, as badge of his em- 
ployment.^* With the reed-pen we ought to mention its neces- 
sary accompaniments : the penknife,® the inkstand (which, when 
double, for black and red ink, was sometimes made of earthenware, 
Kohmari/ni^y and the ruler ^ — it being regarded by the stricter 
*t as unlawful to write any words of Holy Writ on any unlined 
material, no doubt to ensure correct writing and reading.*^ ^ 

In all this we have not referred to the practice of writing on 
leather specially prepared with salt and flour,' nor to the Kelaph, or 
pMchment in the stricter sense.^ For we are here chiefly interested 
in the conmion mode of writing, that on the PinakeSy or * tablet,' 
Wid especially on that covered with wax. Indeed, a little vessel 
holding wax was generally attached to it (Pinakes shceyesh bo beth 
^*Wui shaavah ™). On such a tablet they wrote, of course, not with 
a reed-pen, but with a styluSy generally of iron. This instrument 
^Jiifiisted of two parts, which might be detached from each other : 


^ . — — ' 

» Shabb. 
108 6; 
Sopher. i. 9 

b Shabb. viiL 
« 3 John 13 

* Jot. 
Shabb. i. 3 

• Already 
in Jer. 
and in the 
caUefl Olar, 

Chel. xii. 8 

f Chel. ii. 7 

s CheL xii. 8 

>> Mesr. 16 b 

'Meg. 17 a; 
19 a 

k Shabb. 

•" Chel. xriL 

. ^ut the learned Jlelnndvs asserts 
^ there were in his country such texts 
^tten in gold letters, and that hence 
^ ^khnudic prohibition could have only 
•PPliedto the copies used in the Syna- 
f^P'^s {Ha/vercamp'i ed. of Josephuty vol. 
P- S83, Note e), 

Hot to make a distinction between 
^ portions of Sctipture, and also from 
lT? ^^Urious Elabbalistic idea that some- 
s' ©very word in the Bible contained 

, pivine Name. 

^^ We read of one, Ben Eamzar, who 

^^ four letters (the Tetragram) at 

^^* holding four reeds {KoUimonn) at 

^ ^^me time between his four fingers 

J^***^ 38 h). The great R. Meir was 

S^^tated as a copyist, specially of the 

jj^^, at which work he is said to have 

^?^ iUx>ut 8*. weekly, of which, it is 

* S?^» he spent a third on his living, 

cij5*^5id on his dress, and a third on 

e^^ty to Rabbis (Midr. on Eccle8.ii. 18, 

^^arsh. p. 83 J, last two lines). The 

ao^Oes of R. Meir seem to have embodied 

^^ variatioDB of the common text. 

Thus, in the Psalms he wrote Hallelujah 
in one word, as if it had been an interjec- 
tion, and not in the orthodox way, as two 
words : Hallelu Jah (Jer. Meg. 72 a). HLs 
codices seem also to have had marginal 
notes. Thus, on the words * very good ' 
(n«0 niD). Cten. i. 31, he noted * death is 
good ' (niD 31D), a sort of word-play, to 
support his view, that death was origin- 
ally of God and created by Him — a natural 
necessity rather than a punishment (Ber. 
R. 9). Similarly, on Gen. iii. 21, he altered 
in the margin the i^y, * skin,' of the text 
into ^^K, 'light,' thus rendering 'gar- 
ments of light* (u. s. 20). Again, in 
Gen. xlvi. 23, he left out the > from ^yy^, 
rendering it *And the son of Dan was 
Chushim * (u. s. 94). Similarly, he altered 
the words, Is. xxi. 11, non KB^ * the 
burden of Dumah * into Romay ^on (Jer. 
Taan. p. 64 a, line 10 from top). 

♦ Similarly, the carpenter carried a 
small wooden rule behind his ear. 

• Letters, other documents, or bales of 
merchandise, were sealed with a kind of 
red clay. 


the hard pointed 'writer' (Cothebk), and the 'blotter' (j 
which was flat and thick for smoothing out letters and won 
had been written or rather graven in the wax.' There ca 
question that acknowledgments of debt, and other transactio 
ordinarily written down on such wax-covered tablets ; for no 

> direct reference made to it," but there are special proviaioi 
gard to documents where there are such erasures, or rathe 
mente : such as, that they require to be noted in the do< 
under what conditions and how the witnesses are in such 

!, affix their signatures,'' just as there are particular injuncti 
witnesses who could not write are to affix their mark. 

But although we have thns ascertained that ' the bonds 
Parable must have been written on wax — or else, possibly, oi 
ment — where the Mochek, or blotter, could easily effiice the n 
we have also evidence that they were not, as so oA^n, wri 
'tablets' (the Finakea). For, the Greek term, by whic! 
' bonds ' or ' writings ' are designated in the Parable {ypofi/ta 
the same as is sometimes used in Rabbinic writings (Geromi 
for an acknowledgment of debt;' ' the Hebraised Greek wiot 
sponding to the more commonly used (Syriac) term Shitre (i 
which also primarily denotes ' writings,' and is used specific 
such acknowledgments." * Of these there were two kinds. T 
formal Sketar was not signed by the debtor at all, but onlj 
witnesses, who were to write their names (or marks) imm' 
(not more than two lines) below the text of the document to 
fraud. Otherwise, the document would not possess legal i 
Generally, it was further attested by the Sanhedrin ' of thr 
signed in such manner as not to leave even one line vacant.* 
a document contained the names of creditor and debtor, the 
owing, and the date, together with a clause attaching the p 
of the debtor. In fact, it was a kind of mortgage i all sale 

' The (JesiRnations for the jienenil 
formularj' (Topiet, or Tiphaf (Gitt. iii. 
2), — lypoa), anil for the special clanses 
{Thoreph - Trfi|io8) were of Greek deri- ' The more full designation w 

vation. For the full draft of the varloas Chohh, a writiHR of debt (n. b. 

legal docnnients we refer the render to Shetar .ViVraA (Gitl. iii. 2), a w 

Xote ix. at (he end of Samnter't edition lonn. 

of Baba Mei. pp. 141-148. How ninny ■ The attcalation of the c 

docnmenlii of this Itinil Jewish legalism called Eiytim Jlrik Din, 'the ( 

must haTc invented, may be gathered ment of the court,' atAra, or 

from theciTciimstiincR that //fT^eUfii. a. slreticthening. or Hmphrk (B< 

p. !tM)i'nuiueraieHnoI fewer than thirty- 7 6), Uterilly, the proijaction, vi 

eightdifferetitkiudsof them ! Itappcnrs the court., 
that tticrt) were uertoin forms of tbcr^e 


peity bemg, as with us, subject to such a mortgage,* which bore the chap. 
iMane Aaharajuik (probably, * guarantee ' *). When the debt was xviii 
pad, die legal obligation was simply returned to the debtor ; if paid •BabaB.x" 
in put, either a new bond was written, or a receipt given, which 
TO called Shdbher ^ or Thebhara, because it ' broke ' the debt, J ^^ ^• 

Bot in many respects different were those bonds which were 
^kdaioriedgments of debt for purchases made, such as we suppose 
than to have been which are mentioned in the Parable. In such 
<i&>e8 it was not uncommon to dispense altogether with witnesses, 
vid the document was signed by the debtor himself. In bonds of 
tlu8 kind, the creditor had not the benefit of a mortgage in case of 
«fe. We have expressed our belief that the Parable refers to such 
<ioeament8, and we are confirmed in this by the circumstance that 
they not only bear a different name from the more formal bonds (the 
Skitm\ but one which is perhaps the most exact rendering of the 
Greek term (it nnV * * writing of hand,' *note of hand'^). For *Bai»B.x. 
<^pletenes8' sake we add, in regard to the farming of land, that two 
Unds of leases were in use. Under the first, called Shetar Ariauthj 
tlie lessee {Aris^oipos^) received a certain portion of the produce. 
He might be a lessee for life, for a specified number of years, or even 
t heieditaiy tiller of the ground ; or he might sub-let it to another 
person,* Under the second kind of lease, the farmer— or Mekabbd •* ^^^ ^ 

40 b 

""^tered into a contract for payment either in kind, when he under- 
*W)k to pay a stipulated and unvarying amount of produce, in which 
*•* he was called a Chocher {Chachur or Chachira *), or else a 
^firtain annual rental in money, when he was called a Socher,^ 

2. From this somewhat lengthened digression, we return to 

^ce the moral of the Parable.® It is put in these words : * Make 'St. Luke 

^jonrselves friends out of [by means of] the Mamon of unright- 

**^e«8, that, when it shall fail,® they may receive you into ever- 

^**^ tabernacles.' From what has been previously stated, the 

**®*^^g of these words offers little serious difficulty. We must 

^y'^^l' the derivation and legal bearing the Chocher is stated in Jer. Biccar. 64 //. 

' A 1 **""» *®^ ^"^^ ^^^' "• P- ^^' * ^^^ difference between the Choeh^ 

^-jf^though it is certain that letters of and the Socher is expressed in Tos. Demai 

Ij -A^^we xised by the Jews of old, there vi. 2. Ugolini (Thes. vol. xx. pp. cxix., 

•jjj^^cicnt reason for believing that cxx.) not only renders but copies this 

H^T* were first introduced into com- passage ' wrongly. A more composite 

• S? ^y the Italians, and not by Jews. bargain of letting land and lending 

roi, I ^t Chntiui (in SurenhuHus' Mishna, money for its better cultivation is men- 

r8ti<^ ^* ^^» ^7) S^^^ * different deri- tioned in B. Mez. 69 b. 

leaij?^ *o<^ interpretation, which the • This, and not * they shall fail,' is the 

I »J^^ reader may consult for himself. correct reading. 
"^^^ difference between the ArU and 

xvi. !) 


BOOK again recall the circumstance, that they were primarily addressed "^ 
IV converted publicans and sinners, to whom the expression * Mamon ^^^ 
unrighteousness ' — of which there are close analogies, and even ».i 
exact transcript * in the Targum — would have an obvious meaniiis 
Among us, also, there are not a few who may feel its aptness as the^j 
look back on the past, while to all it carries a much needed wamia^ 
Again, the addition of the definite article leaves no doubt, that ^thc 
everlasting tabernacles' are the well-known heavenly home; in whicl] 
sense the term * tabernacle ' is, indeed, already used in the Old 

• Ps. XT. I. : Testament.* * But as a whole we regard it (as previously hinted) 
latter being an adaptation to the Parable of the well-known Rabbinic saying, thit 
understood there Were certain graces of which a man enjoyed the benefit hef€^ 
while the capital, so to speak, remained for the next world. And if 
a more literal interpretation were demanded, we cannot but feel the 
duty incumbent on those converted publicans, nay, in a sense, <a 
us all, to seek to make for ourselves of the Mamon — be it of mxmejf 
of intellect, of strength, or opportunities, which to many has, and to 
all may so easily, become that ^ of unrighteousness ' — such lasting aad* 
spiritual application : gain such firiends by means of it, that, ^ wheff 
it fails,' as fail it must when we die, all may not be lost, but ratker 
meet us in heaven. Thus would each deed done for God with tto 
Mamon become a friend to greet us as we enter the eternal world. 

3. The suitableness both of the Parable and of its application to 
the audience of Christ appears firom its similarity to what occurs is 
Jewish writings. Thus, the reasoning that the Law could not hi'^ 
been given to the nations of the world, since they had not observed 
the seven Noachic conmiandments (which Rabbinism supposes to 
have been given to the Gentiles), is illustrated by a Parable in which' 
a king is represented as having employed two administrators (ipt- 
teropin) ; one over the gold and silver, and the other over the straw. 
The latter rendered himself suspected, and — continues the Parahte 
— when he complained that he had not been set over the gold airf 
silver, they said unto him : Thou fool, if thou hast rendered thysdf 
suspected in regard to the straw, shall they commit to thee the tarea- 
*Yaikut,Toi. sure of gold and silver?** And we almost seem to hear theve^J 
iJjkd^Tom words of Christ : * He that is faithful' in that which is least, is fiith- 
ful also in much,' in this of the Midrash : * The Holy One, blesaed' 
be His Name, does not give great things to a man until he has been 

1 So in the Targ. on Hab. ii. 9» pt3D ' No doubt the eaoiTalent for tb» 

yirn- Rabbinic pftO. aeoreditui^ and used ift 

* Comp. Schoftgen ad loc. the same sense. 



tried in a small matter ; ' which is illustrated by the history of Moses chap. 
and of David, who were both called to rule from the faithful guiding xvm 
<>^ sheep.* .'sheuLR./ 

OoQsidering that the Jewish mind would be familiar with such ^t^^' 
nodes of illustration, there could have been no misunderstanding of SSSSe** 
the wotds of Christ, These converted publicans might think — and 
BOiQs^some of us — ^that theirs was a very narrow sphere of service, 
one of little importance ; or else, like the Pharisees, and like so 
numy others among us, that faithful administration of the things of 
thi wrid (* the Mamon of unrighteousness ') had no bearing on the 
possession of the true riches in the next world. In answer to the 
fat difficulty, Christ points out that the principle of service is the 
•me, whether applied to much or to little; that the one was, indeed, 
D»et preparation for, and, in truth, the test of the other.'* * He ^^J^"^® 
that is fidthful ' — or, to paraphrase the word (ttwtto^), he that has 
pwed himself, is accredited (answering to pw) — *iii the least, 
w also fidthful [accredited] in much ; and who in the least is un- 
just is also in much unjust.' Therefore, if a man failed in faithful 
•ttvice of Crod in his worldly matters — in the language of the 
liable, if he were not faithful in the Mamon of unrighteousness — 
conld he look for the true Mamon, or riches of the world to come ? 
Voald not his unfaithfulness in the lower stewardship imply unfit- 
ness for the higher ? And — still in the language of the Parable — 
^ tiiey had not proved faithful in mere stewardship, * in that which 
^ another's,' could it be expected that they would be exalted from 
•tewaidship to proprietorship ? And the ultimate application of all 
^ this, that dividedness was impossible in the service of God.*^ • ▼«. is 
ft is impossible for the disciple to make separation between spiritual 
'"Otters and worldly, and to attempt serving God in the one and 
^tttnon in the other. There is absolutely no such distinction to the 
^ple, and our common usage of the words secular and spiritual 
^ derived from a terrible misunderstanding and mistake. To the 
■^ctdar, nothing is spiritual; and to the spiritual, nothing is 
^^oular : No servant can serve two Masters ; ye cannot serve God 
^ Mamon. 

II. The Parable of Dives and Lazarus."^ — Although primarily «st.Luke 
^ken to the Pharisees, and not to the disciples, yet, as will pre- 
^tlj appear, it was spoken for the disciples. The words of Christ 
^ touched more than one sore spot in the hearts of the Phari- 
sees. This consecration of all to God as the necessary condition of 
high spiritual service, and then of higher spiritual standing — as it 

T 2 



were ' ownership ' — such as they claimed, was a very hard soyinj. 
It touched their oovetoUBiiesa. They would have been quite reidj 
to hear, nay, they believed that the ' true ' treasure had been 
mitted to their trust. But that ita condition was, that tbqr; 
prove themselves God-devoted in ' the unrighteous >Iamoit,' 
in the eniployment of it in that for which it was eDtrustecl'J 
atewardship, this was not to be borne. Nor yet, that siudi> 
should be held out to publicans and sinners, while thej 
held from those who were the cuatodiana of the Law 
Prophets. But were they faithful to the Law ? And 
claim of being the ' owners,' the Parable of the Rich 
his bearing would exhibit how unfaithful they were in the 
well as in the little, in what they claimed as owners a.s well 
their stewardship — and that, on their own showing of their relation! 
to publicans and sinners : the Lazarus who lay at their doore. 

Thus viewed, the verses which introduce the second ParaWe 
(that of Dives and Lazarus ) will appear, not ' detached sayings," u 
some commentators would have us believe, but most closely con- 
nected with the Parable to which they form the Preface. Only, hew 
especially, must we remember, that we have only Xotes of Chrirt's 
Discourae, made years before by one who had heard it, and contain- 
ing the barest outline — as it were, the stepping-stones — of the a^ 
ment as it proceeded. I^t us try to follow it. As the PhariiMS 
heard what Christ said, their covetouaness was touched. It is wi, 
moreover, that they derided Him- — literally, ' turned up their iic»m 
at Him.' The mocking gestures, with which they pointed to Hi( 
pnbliean-diacipleK, would be accompanied by mocking words in 
which they would extol and favourably compare their own claims 
and standing with that of those new disciples of Christ. Not onlf 
to refute but to confute, to convict, and, if possible, to convince 
them, was the object of Christ's Discourse and Parable, One by one 
their pleas were taken up and shown to be utterly untenable. They 
were persons who by outward righteousness and pretences sought t** 
appear just before men, but God knew their hearts ; and that whio^ 
was exalted among men, their Pbariwaic standing and standing aloot 
was abomination before Him. Theae two points form the main sa^*" 
ject of the Parable, lie, jirat object was to show the great differeo*'* 
between the ' before men ' and the ' before God ; ' between Difea ^** 
he ap|3ears to men in this world, and as he is before God and will I'* 
in the nest world. Again, the aeco'ad main object of the Parable ir^ " 
to illustrate that their Pharisaic standing and standing aloof— tt«-* 


bearing of Dives in reference to a. Lazams — which was the glory of chap. 
FhuiBsiBm before men, was an abomination before God. Yet a xviii 
, object (if the Parable was in reference to their covetousnesa, ' 

!h utie which they made of their possessions — their Mamon. 
jlfish was an nnrighteons use ; and, as such, would meet with 
ribution than in the case of an un^thful steward. 
we l(-a\e for the present the comparative analysis of the 
iim to the introductory words of Christ. Having 
lat thi- claims of the Pharieees and their standing aloof from 
were an abomination before God, Christ combats these 
inf their bearing, that they were the custodians and ob- 
tlie liftw and of the Prophets, while those poor siimers 
claims upon the Kingdom of God. Yes— but the Law and 
the Proph'l- hiid their terminua ad qiiem in John the Baptist, who 
' brongfat the good tidings of the Kingdom of God.' Since then 
' every one ' had to enter it by personal resolution and ' force.' ■ " ^^ . 
Yes — it was true that the Law could not ftiil in one tittle of it.'' um otter 
Bat, notorionsly and in everyday life, the Pharisees, who thus spoke iiw[w«g8 
of the Iaw and appealed to it, were the constant and open breakers ^'■|i;°J? 
of it. Witness here their teaching and practice concerning divorce, 
which realty involved a breach of the seventh commandment." -w-w 

Thos, when bearing in mind that, as previously stated, we have 
here only the ' heads,' or rather the ' stepping stones,' of Christ's 
vgnment — from notes by a hearer at the time, which were after- 
wards given to St. Luke — -we clearly perceive, how closely connected 
we the seemingly disjointed sentences which preface the Parable, 
md how aptly they introduce it. The Parable itself is strictly of the 
fhuisees and their relation to the ' publicans and sinners ' whom 
they desiNsed, and to whose stewardship they opposed thoughts of 
tW own proprietorship. With infinite wisdom and depth the 
hnble tells in two directions : in regard to their selfish use of the 
Irtwal riches — their covetousnesa — and in regard to their selfish 
■« of the figurative riches : their Pharisaic righteousness, which 
™ potn: Lazarus at their door to the dogs and to &mine, not bestow- 
oig on him anght from their supposed rich festive banquets. 

On the otlier hand, it will be necessary in the interpretation of 
^Pkrsble to keep in mind, that its Parabolic details must not be 
•*ploited, nor doctrines of any kind derived from tbem, either as 
>*ittM character of the other world, the question of the duration of 
nton {nmishments, or the possible mcoal improvement of those in 
^*^nom. All such things are foreign to the Parable, which is 





only intended as a type, or exemplification and illustration, of what is 
intended to be tanght. And, if proof were required, it would smely 
be enough to remind ourselves, that this Parable is addressed to the 
Pharisees, to whom Christ would scarcely have communicated detaih 
about the other world, on which the Lord was so reticent when 
speaking to the disciples. The Parable naturally Mis into three 

1. Dives and Lazarus before and after death, *■ or the oontnat 
between * before men ' and * before Grod ; ' the unrighteous nae of 
riches — literal and figurative; and the relations of the Phaiiafe 
Dives to the publican Lazarus, as before men and as befon God : 
the ^ exalted among men ' an ^ abomination before Grod.' And the 
application of the Parable is here only the more telling, that ckaiB 
were so highly esteemed among the Pharisees, and that the typical 
Pharisee is thus set before them as, on their own showingi the 
typical sinner. 

The Parable opens by presenting to us ^ a rich man ' * clothed in 
purple and byssus, joyously tdiing every day in splendour.' All here 
is in character. His dress is described as the finest and most costly) 
for byssus and purple were the most expensive materials, only in- 
ferior to silk, which, if genuine and unmixed — ^for at least three kind* 
of silk are mentioned in ancient Jewish writings — was worth its 
weight in gold. Both byssus — of which it is not yet quite certain, 
whether it was of hemp or cotton — and purple were indeed mann- 
factured in Palestine, but the best byssus (at least at that time ') 
came from Egjrpt and India. The white garments of the High- 
Priest on the Day of Atonement were made of it.* To pass over 
exaggerated accounts of its costliness,^ the High-Priest's dress of 
Pelusian linen for the morning service of the Day of Atonement 
was said to have cost about S6L ; that of Indian linen for the even- 
ing of the same day about 24i. Of course, this stuflF would, if tS 
home-manufactiure, whether made in Galilee or in Judaea,* be mud^ 
cheaper. As regarded purple, which was obtained firom the coasts of 
• 8h»bb.26a Tyre,® wool of violet-purple was sold about that time by the pound 
at the rate of about 3L the Eoman pound, though it would, c^* 
course, considerably vary in price. 

Quite in accordance with this luxuriousness — unfortunately n<^^ 
uncommon among the very high-placed Jews, since the Talmo.^ 
(though, no doubt, exaggeratedly) speaks of the dress of a corraj^'^ 

* Yosia iii. 

• Jer. Yoma 



> In later times Palestinian byssas seems to have been in great zepnte. See Ber^ 
feldf HandelBgesoh. p. 107. 



High-Priest as having cost upwards of 300Z«* — was the feasting every chap. 

day, the description of which conveys the impression of compcmy^ xvni 

TnerrwMfrUy and splendour. All this is, of course, intended to set • Jer. Yoma 

forth the selfish use which this man made of his wealth, and to 

point the contrast of his bearing towards Lazarus. Here also every 

detail is meant to mark the pitiableness of the case, as it stood out 

before Dives. The very name — ^not often mentioned in any other real, 

and never in any other Parabolic story — tells it : Lazarus^ Laazar, 

a common abbreviation of Elazar^ as it were, ^ God help him ! ' Then 

we read that he * was cast ' ^ {ifiiffXrfro) at his gateway, as if to mark that 

the bearers were glad to throw down their unwelcome burden.^ Laid 

there, he was in fall view of the Pharisee as he went out or came in, 

or sat in his courtyard. And as he looked at him, he was covered 

with a loathsome disease ; as he heard him, he uttered a piteous 

request to be filled with what fell from the rich man's table. Yet 

nothing was done to help his bodily misery, and, as the word 

< desiring ' {hriBvfi&v) implies, his longing for the ^ crumbs ' remained 

unsatisfied. So selfish in the use of his wealth was Dives, so 

wretched Lazarus in his view; so self-satisfied and unpitying was 

the Pharisee, so miserable in his sight and so needy the publican 

and sinner. ^ Yea, even the dogs came and licked his sores' — and it 

is not to be understood as an alleviation, but as an aggravation of 

his ills, that he was left to the dogs, which in Scripture are always 

represented as unclean animals. 

So it was before men. But how was it before God ? There the 

relation was reversed. The beggar died — no more of him here. But 

the Angels ^carried him away into Abraham's bosom.' Leaving 

aside for the present ' the Jewish teaching concerning the * after 

death,' we are struck with the sublime simplicity of the figurative 

Isngoage used by Christ, as compared with the wild and sensuous 

^cies of later Rabbinic teaching on the subject. It is, indeed, 

^'Tie, that we must not look in this Parabolic language for Christ's 

*®aching about the * after death.' On the other hand, while He 

. Xhe better reading of ver. 20 is that 
r7*^ll>»led in the Beyised Version : 'And a 

4. ^i«au beggar named Lazarus' — only 
^^ we shoold render * was cast.' 


X cannot understand why 
Y — '^i^fv should imagine that the name 
rj^™» had been chosen with special 



iL^^t^enoe to, and as a warning to 
^^herof Martha and Maiy. If Lazarus 
^ ^^ ethany was thus to be warned in re- 
^^^ to the proper use of Ms riches, his 

name would have been given to Dives, 
and not to the beggar. But besides, can 
we for one moment believe that Christ 
would in such manner have introduced 
the name of Lazarus of Bethany into 
such a Parable, he being alive at the 
time ? Nothing, surely, could be further 
from Uis general mode of teaching than 
the introduction of such personalities. 
■ For this see Book V. ch. vi. 




• Chethab. 
104 a; 
Bemidb. R. 
p.42 6; 
Turg. on 
Ouit. It. is 

xiiL 16 ; 
Kidd. 72 /*, 

• Brnb. 1!> a 

St. Lake 
xvt 23-26 



r Ber. 84 6 

> Yajjik. B. 
S2, b(^n- 

^ n. 8. p. 48 6, 
lines 8 and 9 
from top 

• Mldr. on 
BoelflB. L 1ft, 
ed. Wanh. 
p. 81*. 
•boat the 

would say nothing that was essentially divergent from, at least, the 
purest views entertained on the subject at that time — since otherwue 
the object of the Parabolic illustration would have been lost — yet> 
whatever He did say must, when stripped of its Parabolic detaili, 
be consonant with fact. Thus, the carrying up of the soul of ilie 
righteous by Angels is certainly in accordance with Jewish teodiing, 
though stripped of all legendary details, such as about the number and 
the greetings of the Angels.^ But it is also fully in accordance with 
Christian thought of the ministry of Angels. Again, as regards the 
expression * Abraham's bosom,' it occurs, although not frequently, in 
Jewish writings.* * On the other hand, the appeal to Abraham aft 
our father is so frequent, his presence and merits are so ooofltiiiUy 
invoked ; notably, he is so expressly designated as he who reodvat 
(^npo) the penitent into Paradise,*^ that we can see how congmooi 
especially to the higher Jewish teaching, which dealt not in oonnAj 
sensuous descriptions of Oan Edeiiy or Paradise, the phrase * Abn^ 
ham's bosom ' must have been. Nor surely can it be necessaij to 
vindicate the accord with Christian thinking of a figurative exprei* 
sion, that likens us to children lying lovingly in the bosom of Abnh 
ham as our spiritual father. 

2. Dives and Lazarus after death ^ : The * great contrast ' fiiDy 
realised, and how to enter into the Kingdom. — Here also the main 
interest centres in Dives. He also has died and been buried, Thw 
ends all his exaltedness before men. The next scene is in Hades ot 
Sheoly the place of the disembodied spirits before the final Judgment 
It consists of two divisions : the one of consolation, with all the 
faithful gathered unto Abraham as their father ; the other of fitfj 
torment. Thus far in accordance with the general teaching of the 
New Testament. As regards the details, they evidently represcB* 
the views current at the time among the Jews. According to theiDt 
the Garden of Eden and the Tree of Life were the abode of th* 
blessed.® Nay, in common belief, the words of Gen. ii. 10 : * a rivc^ 
went out of Eden to water the garden,' indicated that this Eden ¥•* 
distinct from, and superior to, the garden in which Adam had bect^ 
originally placed.^ With reference to it, we read that the righteoO^ 
in Gan Eden see the wicked in Oehinnorrij and rejoice;' an^ 
similarly, that the wicked in Oehinnom see the righteous sittixi^ 
beatified in Oan Eden^ and their souls are troubled.* Still mo^ 
marked is the parallelism in a legend told ^ about two wicked 

1 Bat I do not think with Oriinm iy. p. 347) that the expresdon refen tc^ 
(Kurzgef. Exeg. Handb. z. d. Apokr. Lief, feast of fellowship. 


panions, of whom one had died impenitent, while the other on seeing c. 
it had repented. After death, the impenitent in Qehinnom saw the s 
h&ppiness of hie former companion, and murmured. When told that ^ 
the difference of their &te was due to the other's penitence, he wished 
to have space assigned for it, but was informed that this life (the 
eve of the Sabbath) was the time for making provision for the next 
(the Sabbath). Again, it is consonant with what were the views of 
the Jews, that conversations could be -held between dead persons, of 
which several legendary instances are given in the Talmud." The .Ba 
torment, especially of thirst, of the wicked, is repeatedly mentioned 
in Jewish writings. Thus, in one place,** the hb\e of Tantalus is "Ja 
apparently repeated. The righteous is seen beside delicious springs, 
and the wicked with his tongue parched at the brink of a river, the 
waves <^ which are constantly receding from him." But there is this •om 
very marked and characteristic contrast, that iu the Jewish legend ji i, 
the beatified is a Pharisee, while the sinner tormented with thirst is 
a PabUcan ! Above all, and as marking the vast difference between 
Jewish ideas and Christ's teaching, we notice that there is no 
analt^y in Rabbinic writings to the statement in the Parable, that 
there is a wide and impassable gulf between Paradise and G-eheuna. 

To return to the Parable. When we read that Dives in torments 

' lifted np his eyes,' it was, no doubt, for help, or, at least, alleviation. 

Then he first perceived and recognised the reversed relationship. 

The teixt emphatically repeats here : * And he,' — literally, thia one 

(ml ovTov), as if now, for the first time, he realised, but only to 

migonderstand and misapply it, how easily superabundance might 

nuniHter relief to extreme need — 'calling (viz., upon=invoking) 

«ud : " Father Abraham, have mercy upon me, and send Lazaros." ' 

The invocation of Abraham, as having the power, and of Abraham as 

'Pither,' was natural on the part of a Jew. And our Lord does not 

We express what really was, but only introduces Jews as speaking in 

•Mordance with the popular notions. Accordingly, it does not 

MMSjarily imply on the part of Dives either glorification of carnal 

™seent (Oloriatio camia, as Bengel has it), nor a latent idea that 

K might still dispose of Lazarus. A Jew would have appealed to 

'Either Abraham' under such or like circiunstances, and many 

"••kigous Btatements might be quoted in proof. But all the more 

'^ling is it, that the rich Pharisee should behold in the bosom of 

"•"ihain, whose child he specially claimed to be, what, in his sight, 

"sd been poor Lazarus, covered with moral sores, and, religiously 

■ AootRding to aome of the aommentBton thwe were, however, dreams. 


speaking, thrown down outside his gate ; not only not admitted to 
the fellowship of his religious banquet, but not even to be fed by the 
crumbs that fell from his table, and to be left to the dogs. And it 
was the climax of the contrast that he should now have to invoke, 
and that in vain, his ministry, seeking it at the hands of Abraham. 
And here we also recall the previous Parable about making, ere it 
fail, friends by means of the Mamon of unrighteousness, that they 
may welcome us in the everlasting tabernacles. 

It should be remembered that Dives now limits his request to 
the hiunblest dimensions, asking only that Lazarus might be sent to 
dip the tip of his finger in the cooling liquid, and thus give him 
even the smallest relief. To this Abraham replies, though in a tone 
of pity : * Child,' yet decidedly, showing him, first, the rightness of 
the present position of things ; and, secondly, the impossibilitj of 
any alteration, such as he had asked. Dives had, in his lifetime, 
received his good things ; that had been his things, he had cfaoflen 
them as his part, and used them for self, without conmiunicating of 
them. And Lazarus had received evil things. Now Lazams vu 
comforted, and Dives in torment. It was the right order — not that 
Lazarus was comforted because in this world he had suffered, nor 
yet that Dives was in torment because in this world he had had 
riches. But Lazarus received there the comfort which had been 
refused to him on earth, and the man who had made this world hi« 
good, and obtained there his portion, of which he had refused evca 
the crumbs to the most needy, now received the meet reward of hi* 
unpitying, unloving, selfish life. But, besides all this, which in 
itself was right and proper, Dives had asked what was impossible : no 
intercourse could be held between Paradise and Gehenna, and on 
this account ^ a great and imj^assable chasm existed between the t^ 
so that, even if they would, they could not, pass from heaven to hell? 
nor yet firom hell to those in bliss. We would suggest that— 
although doctrinal statements should not be drawn firom Parabolic 
illustrations, at least, so far as this Parable goes — it seems to preclude 
the hope of a gradual change or transition after a life lost in tb* 
service of sin and self. 
^tLuke 3. Application of the Parahle^^ showing how the Law andtb^ 

Prophets cannot fail, and how we must now press into the Kingdo^' 
It seems a strange misconception on the part of some conmientata^^ 
that the next request of Dives indicates a conmiencing change ^ 

* The exact rendering in ver. 26 is : 'in order that {Zwws, so also in ver. S8) H^^' 
who would pass from hence to you/ &c. 

XTi 27-81 


mind on his part. To begfin with, this part of the Parable is only 
intended to illnstrate the need, and the sole means of converHion to 
God — the appeal to the law and the Prophets being the more apt 
that the PhariBeea made their boast of them, and the refasal of any 
special miraculous interposition the more emphatic, that the Pharisees 
had been asking for * a sign &om heaven,' Besides, it would require 
more than ordinaiy charity to discover a moral change in the desire 
that bis brothers might — not be converted, but not come to that 
place of torment ! 

Dismissing, therefore, this idea, we now find Dives pleading that 
Irfuanis might be seat to his five brothers, who, as we infer, were of 
the same disposition and life as himself hall been, to ' testily unto 
them' — the word implying more than ordinary, even earnest, testi- 
mony. Presumably, what he so earnestly asked to be attested was, that 
-he. Dives, was in torment; and the expected effect, not of the testi- 
mony but of the mission of Lazarus,' whom they are supposed to have * 
known, was, that these, his brothers, might not come to the same 
place. At the same time, the request seems to imply an attempt at 
self-jnstification, as if, during his life, he had not had sufficient 
warning. Accordingly, the reply of Abraham is no longer couched 
in a tone of pity, but implies stem rebuke of Dives. They need no 
witness-bearer: they have Moses and the Prophets, let them hear 
them. If testimony be needed, theirs has been given, and it is 
sufficient — a reply this, which would specially appeal to the Pharisees. 
And when Dives, now, perhaps, as much bent on self-justification as 
on the message to his brothers, remonstrates that, although they had 
not received such testimony, yet ' if one come to them &om the 
dead,' they would repent, the final, and, as alas, history has shown 
nnce the Kesurrection of Christ, the true answer is, that * if they hear 
not [give not hearing to] Moses and the Prophets, neither will they 
be ii^uenced ' [moved : their intellects to believe, their wills to 
^qient], if one rose from the dead.' 

And here the Parable, and the warning to the Pharisees, abruptly 
t'etk off. When next we hear the Master's voice,'' it is in loving > 
'Iflication to the disciples of some of the lessons which were implied 
<i>«hat He had spoken to the Pharisees, 

cing th< 

tbat of inflneDciiig the will to repent- 
ance, seems more likely to Lave been ii 
w of moTing 01 inflnen- tended. 






• St. Luke 
xL6 &o. 

St. Luke 
xviiL7, 8 

• rvii 20, 21 
« VT. 32-37 

• St. John 

'St Luke 

t St Lake 

(St. Luke xviii. 1-14 ; St. Matt, xviii. 23-36.) 

If we were to seek confirmation of the suggestion, that these Isst 
and the two preceding Parables are grouped together under a 
common viewpoint, such as that of Rigkteowaneaa, the character 
and position of the Parables now to be examined would supfdy it 
For, while the Parable of the Unjust Judge evidently bean dose 
affinity to those that had preceded — especially to that of him iriio 
persisted in his request for bread • — it evidently refers not, as the 
other, to man's present need, but to the Second Coming of Christ. 
The prayer, the perseverance, the delay, and the ultimate answer of 
which it speaks, are all connected with it.** Indeed, it follows on 
what had passed on this subject immediately before — first, between 
the Pharisees and Christ,^ and then between Christ and the disciples.* 

Again, we must bear in mind that between the Parable of Dvo» 
and Lazarus and that of the Unjust Judge, not, indeed, a great 
interval of time, but most momentous events, had intervened. These 
were : the visit of Jesus to Bethany, the raising of Lazarus, the 
Jerusalem council against Christ, the flight to Ephraim,* a brief stay 
and preaching there, and the commencement of His last journey ^ 
Jerusalem.' During this last slow journey firom the borders rf 
Galilee to Jerusalem, we suppose the Discourses * and the Parab^* 
about the Coming of the Son of Man to have been spoken. Ao* 
although such utterances will be best considered in connection witS^ 
Christ's later and ftdl Discourses about * The Last Things,' we readily 
perceive, even at this stage, how, when He set His Face towai<>^ 
Jerusalem, there to be off^ered up, thoughts and words concemiJ^^ 
the * End ' may have entered into all His teaching, and so have giv^'' 
occasion for the questions of the Pharisees and disciples, and for i3> 
answers of Christ, alike by Discourse and in Parable. 

The most common and specious, but also the most serious 


take in reference to the Parable c^ * the Unjust Judge,' is to re^;ard it 
as implying that, just as the poor widow insisted in her petition and 
vas righted because of her insistence, so the disciples should ineiBt in 
prayer, and would be heard because of their insistence. But this is 
an entirely felse interpretation. When treating of the Parable of 
the Unrighteoua Steward, we disclaimed all merely mechanical ideas 
of prayer, as if G-od heard as for our many repetitions. This error 
must here also be carefully avoided. The inference from the Parable 
is not, that the Church will be ultimately vindicated because she per- 
severes in prayer, but that she so perseveres, because God will 
surely right her cause : it is not, that insistence in prayer is the 
cause of its answer, but that the certainty of that which is asked for 
shonld lead to continuance in prayer, even when all around seems to 
forbid the hope of answer. This is the lesson to be learned &om 
a comparison of the Unjust Judge with the Just and Holy God in His 
dealings with His own. If the widow persevered, knowing that, 
although no other consideration, human or Divine, would influence 
the Unjust Judge, yet her insistence would secure its object, how 
much more should we ' not faint,' but continue in prayer, who are 
appealing to God, Who has His people and His cause at heart, even 
though He delay, remembering also that even this is for their sakes 
■who pray. And this is fully expressed in the introductory words : ' He 
spake also a Parable to them with reference' to the need be {-n-pos to 
Ztip) of their' always praying, and not tainting.'* 

The remarks just made will remove what otherwise might seem 

another serious difficulty. If it be asked, bow the conduct of the 

TJojust Judgeconld serve as illustration of what might be expected &om 

Ood, we answer, that t^e lesson in the Parable is not from the simi- 

-. luitybut from the contrast between the Unrighteous human and the 

t ffighteous Divine Judge. ' Hear what the Unrighteous Judge saith. 

1 Bnt God ^mark the emphatic position of the word], shall He not 

t indeed [ou ftTj] vindicate [the injuries of, do judgment for] His 

f "iect . . .? ' In truth, this mode of argument is perhaps the most 

WttUnon in Jewish Parables, and occurs on almost every page of 

^<^ient Babbinic commentaries. It is called the Kal vaChomer, 

'^ht and heavy,' and answers to our reasoning a fortiori or de 

^'i'n.ore ad majue (from the less to the greater).* According to the 

. Stbd this BhowB that it ia intended ' The verbs axe, of conise, in the inflni- 

!?.**>«irk an easentjal difference between tiva 

"^v ttod the preceiUng Parables. < Sometimea it ia applied in the oppo- 

The wora airtiis shonld be inserted Bitediiection,fioin the greater totbeless. 


BOOK Rabbis, ten instances of such reasoning occur in the Old Testament >* 
IV itself.* Generally, such reasoning is introduced by the words Kal 
• Ber.B.92. vaChomeT ; often it is prefaced by, Al oLchcUh Cammdh veCammahf 
p . ig4y * against one how much and how much,' that is, * how much more.' 
the middle Thus, it is arguod that, ^ if a King of flesh and blood ' did so and sOy 
shall not the King of Kings, &c. ; or, if the sinner received sndi 
and such, shall not the righteous, &c. In the present Parable the 
reasoning would be : ^ If the Judge of Unrighteousness ' said that he 
would vindicate, shall not the Judge of all Righteousness do judg- 
ment on behalf of His Elect ? In &ct, we have an exact Babfaixue 
parallel to the thought imderlying, and the lesson derived from, Hm 
Parable. When describing, how at the preaching of Jonah Nineveh 
repented and cried to God, His answer to the loud persistent ay of 
the people is thus explained : ^ The bold (he who is unabashed^ 
conquers even a vricked person [to grant him his request], bow much 
» pedkte, more the All-Good of the world ! ' *» 

ed. BftbtTy 

^161 a, The Parable opens by laying down as a general principle the 

from bottom necessity and duty of the disciples always to pray — ^the precbe 
meaning being defined by the opposite, or limiting clause : * not to 
feint,' that is, not * to become weary.' ^ The word * always ' must not 
be understood in respect of time, as if it meant continuously, but at 
all times, in the sense of under all circumstances, however apparently 
adverse, when it seems as if an answer could not come, and we ar« 
therefore in danger of * fainting ' or becoming weary. This rnlft 
applies here primarily to that ^ weariness ' which might lead to the 
cessation of prayer for the Coming of the Lord, or of expectancy of 
it, during the long period when it seems as if He delayed His retum? 
nay, as if increasingly there were no likelihood of it. But it may 
also be applied to all similar circumstances, when prayer seems 80 
long unanswered that weariness in praying threatens to overtake Ttf* 
Thus, it is argued, even in Jewish writings, that a man should never 
be deterred from, nor cease praying, the illustration by Kal ^ 
Ghomer being from the case of Moses, who knew that it was decreed 
^ago^, ed. he should not enter the land, and yet continued praying about it/ 
w^H^7 The Parable introduces to us a Judge in a city, and a wido^* 

Except where a case was voluntarily submitted for arbitration ratb^^ 
than judgment, or judicial advice was sought of a sage, one ms^ 

* These t^n passages are : Gen. xliv. 8; wherever it occurs in the N. T. rri^' 

Exod. vi. 9, 12; Numb. xii. 14; Deut. St. Luke xviii. 1; 2 Cor. iv. 1, 16; O^ 

zxzi. 27 ; two instances in Jerem. xii. 5 ; vi. 9 ; Eph. iii. 13 ; and 2 Thess. iiL 1^* 

1 Sam. xxiii. 3 ; Prov. xi. 31 ; Esth. ix. 12; It is thus peculiar to St. Luke and ^^ 

and Ezek. xv. 6. St. Paul. 

' The verb is used in the same sense 


conld not Iiave formed a Jewish tribuaal. Besides, his mode of chap. 
speaking and acting is inconsistent with such a hypothesis. He must xix 
therefore hare been one of the Judges, or mnnicipal authorities, 
appointed by Herod or the Romans — perhaps a Jew, but not a Jewish 
Judge. Posdbly, he may have been a iiolice-magistrate, or one who 
had some ftmction of that kind delegated to him. We know that, 
at least in Jerusalem, there were two stipendiary magistrates (Day- 
airuQ Geseroth '), whose duty it was to see to the observance of all t^"'"'^ 
police-regulations and the prevention of crime. Unlike the regular 
Judges, who attended only on certain days and hours,'' and were 'Shabb-io. 
onpaidj these magistrates were, so to speak, always on duty, and 
hence unable to engage in any other occupation. It was probably 
for this reason that they were paid out of the Temple-Treasury, and 
received so large a salary as 225^., or, if needful, even more." On ■ chcth, 
account of this, perhaps also for their UDJust exactions, Jewish wit 
designated them, by a play on the words, as Dayainey Geseloth — 
Robber-Judges, instead of their real title of Dayainey Geseroth 
(Judges of Prohibitions, or else of Punishments). ' It may have 
been that there were such Jewish magistrates in other places also.*' gj^ij'^'^ 
Jos»phua speaks of local magistracies."* At any rate there were J^"*'" 
in every locality police-officials, who watched over order and law.' -Aiit. (".a. 
The Talmud speaks in very depreciatory terms of these ' village- 
Judges ' (^Dayainey deMegiatha), in opposition to the town tribu- 
Tials (B«i Davar), and accuses them of ignorance, arbitrariness, and 
covetonsness, so that for a dish of meat they would pervert justice.' ',,^,^^- 
Treqnent instances are also mentioned of gross injustice and bribery 
in regard to the non-Jewish Judges in Palestine. 

It is to such a Judge that the Parable refers — one who was con- 

•cioasly, openly, and avowedly • inaccessible to the highest motive, j^'i^^^"^ 

the fear of God, nor even restrained by the lower consideration of 

'*gard for public opinion. It is an extreme case, intended to illns- 

- 'rate the exceeding unlikelihood of justice being done. For the same 

POipose, the party seeking justice at his hands is described as a poor, 

^ ""protected widow. But we must also bear in mind, in the inter- 

Ptetfltion of this Parable, that the Church, whom she represents, is 

■ "'^ widowed in the absence of her Lord. To return — this widow 

'^me ' to the Unjust Judge (the imperfect tense in the original 

M„ Comp. Geiger, UiHChr. u. tiebers, pp. ' Cooip. BUtek, Mos. Talm. I'olizeirecht, 

Jr» 120, Note, with which, however, wliich is, however, only an enlftrfroment 
j*I>, the two Emajs mentioned in Note of FrantfVi esfiij in the Monaisnhr. fiir 
Gescb. d. Judenth. tor 1862, pp. 243-261. 

i He«0«^«r, n. 1. p. IIS. 


mdicatiDg repeated, even continuous coming), with the argent 
demand to be vindicated of her adversary, that is, that the Judge 
ebould make legal inquiry, and by a decision set her right as against 
him at whose hands she was suffering wrong. For reasons of his own 
he would not ; and this continued for a while. At laat, not &om any 
higher principle, nor even from regard for public opinion — both of 
which, indeed, as he avowed to himself, had no weight with him — he 
complied with her request, as the text (literally translated) has it : 
' Yet at any rate ' because this widow troubleth me, I will do justice 
for her, lest, in the end, coming she bruise me ' ' — do peraonal vit^esce 
to me, attack me bodily. Then follows the grand inference from it: 
If the * Judge of Unrighteousness ' speak thus, shall not the Judge 
of all Righteousness — God — do judgment, vindicate [by His Coming 
to judgment and so setting right the wrong done to His Chnrdi] 
' His Elect, which cry to Him day and night, although He soSer long 
on account of them ' — delay His final interposition of judgment and 
mercy, and that, not as the Unjust Judge, but for their own sabei, 
that the number of the Elect may all be gathered in, and they folly 

Difficult as the rendering of this last clause admittedly ie, oar 
interpretation of it seems confirmed by the final application of tbii 
Parable.'' Taking the previous verse along with it, we would h»Te 
this double Parallelism : ' But G-od, shall He not vindicate [do jm^ 
ment on behalf of] His Elect ? ' ■= * I tell you, that He will do juilg- 
ment on behalf of them shortly ' — this word being chosen rather tbia 
' speedily ' (as in the A. and R. V.), because the latter might oonvej 
the idea of a sudden interposition, such as is not implied in the «' 
preasion. This would be the first Parallelism ; the second tliii: 
* Although He suffer long [delay His final inter]K>sitioa] on aocoo* 
of them ' (verse 7 ), to which the second clause of verse 8 would cor- 
respond, as offering the explanation and vindication : ' But the Son 
of ilan, when He have come, shall He find the failh upon the earth!' 
It is a terribly sad question, as put by Him 'Who is the Christ : Aftw 
all this long-suffering delay, shall He find the faith upon the earth- 
intellectual belief on the part of one class, and on the part of the 
Church the faith of the heart which trusts in, longs, and pr*?"! 
because it expects and looks for His Coming, all undisturbed by th* 
prevailing unbelief around, only quickened by it to more intensity 

' theonlj-possiblerendering of afraid o£ bodily violence rroni tbe t'*'^ 
the verb in this instance, also is vindicated pernted woman. For a signifiesnt I*S^ 
by Xfijcr aU ]oc. The Judge seems lietic use ot the verb, comp. 1 Cor. iX- "' 


of prayer ! Shall He find it ? Let the history of the Church, nay, 
each man's heart, make answer ! 

2. The Parable of the Pharisee and the PvhlicaTi, which follows,* ■" 
is only internally connected with that of ' the Unjust Judge.' It is 
not of unrighteouBnesB, bnt of self-righteouaneaB — and this, both in 
ita positive and negative aspects : as trust in one's own state, and as 
contempt of others. Again, it has also this connection with the 
previous Farahle, that, whereas that of the Unrighteous Judge pointed 
to continuance, this to humility in prayer. 

The introductory clause shows that it has no connection in pcnat 
of time with what had preceded, although the interval between the 
two may, of course, have been very short. Probably, something had 
taken place, which is not recorded, to occasion this Parable, which, if 
not directly addressed to the Pharisees,' is to such as are of Phari- 
eaic spirit. It brings before us two men going up to the Temple — 
Tbether * at the hour of prayer,' or otherwise, is not stated. Re- 
membering that, with the exception of the Psalms for the day and the 
interval for a certain prescribed prayer, the service in the Temple was 
entirely sacriiicial, we are thankful for such glimpses, which show 
that, both in the time of public service, and still more at other times, 
tbe Temple was made th,e place of private prayer.*" On the present " 
occasion the two men, who went together to the entrance oC tbe < 
Temple, represented the two religious extremes in Jewish society. 
To the entrance of the Temple, but no farther, did tbe Pharisee and 
tile Publican go together. Within the sacred enclosure- — before 
^) where man should least have made it, began their separation. 
'He Pharisee put himself by himself,* and prayed thus : God, I 
'i'Wik thee that I am not as the rest of men — extortioners, unjust, 
"dnlterers — nor also as this Publican [there].' Never, perhaps, were 
'orda of thanksgiving spoken in less tbankfulneas than these. For, 
tlunkfblnesB implies the acknowledgment of a gift ; hence, a sense 
'^ Dot having had ourselves what we have received ; in other words, 

'Hie objectioD of &Ai«i*rm««jt*r * stood ' would seem utterly idle. He could 

vnUnred by later cominentatora), that, DOt hove sat, 3. The rendering * prayed 

'!• Parable sddrMBed to Pharisees, a with himael!,' is not correct. The words 

^''Uee vonld not have been introduced mean : ' to himself ' — and this would give 

•"iediief figure, seems of iittleforce. no meaning. But even were wetorendcr 

^, Por the philological vindication of it 'with himself in the sense of silent 

^ t^deziag, see OoeM, Parabeln (i. p. prayer, the introduction of such a remark 

v^- The argamenta in its favour are as as that he prayed silently, would be both 

^"vi: 1. It oorreaponds to the descrip- ueed less and aimless. Bnt what decides 

^ of the poiition of tbe Fublican. who ns is the paralleliam with the account of 

JJ'Koodl^hinWBlf' afar off." 2. Other- the posture of the Publican. 
^*> the mention that the Pharisee 


then, a sense of our personal need, or hniniUty. But the very first act 
of this Pharisee had been to separate himself from all the otiter w«^ 
shippers, and notably from the Publican, whom, as his words ahow, 
be bad noticed, and looked down upon. His thanksgiving referred not 
to what he had received, but to the sins of others by which they were 
separated from him, and to his own meritorioas deeds by whicJi bt 
was separated from them. Thus, his words expressed what his attitude 
indicated ; and both were the expression, not of thankfulness, hot vi 
boastfulness. It was the same as their bearing at feasts and in paUk 
places ; the same as their contempt and condemnation of * tlie reit 
of men,' and especially ' the publicans ; ' the same that even tbar 
designation — 'Pharisees,' 'Separated ones,' implied. The 'rest of 
men ' might be either the Gentiles, or, more probably, the common 
unlearned people, the Ath kaArez, whom they accused or euq>ected 
of every possible sin, according to their fundamental principle: 
' The unlearned cannot be pious.' And, in their sense of that tent, j 
they were right — and in this lies the condemnation of their ri^teoiu- ' 
ness. And, most painful though it be, remembering the downri^ I 
earnestness and zeal of these men, it must be added that, as « J 
read the Liturgy of the Synagogue, we come ever and again upo I 
such and similar thanksgiving — that they are ' not as the rest rf 1 

But this was not all. From looking down upon others the Phui- 
see proceeded to look up to himself. Here Talmudic writings dSe 
painful parallelisms. They are full of references to the merits of the 
just, to 'the merits and righteousness of the iathers,' or else*' 
Israel in taking upon itself the Law. And for the sake of tbeo 
merits and of that righteousness, Israel, as a nation, expects gcoai 
acceptance, pardon, and temporal benefits '^for, all epirituai beM- 
fits Israel as a nation, and the pious in Israel individually, poM< 
aheady, nor do they need to get them from heaven, since thejo* 
and do work them out for themselves. And here the Pharisee t> 
the Parable significantly dropped even the form of thanksgiving. H* 
religious performances which he enumerated are those which B** 

I Of this spirit are even such Eulogies 
89 these in the ordinary mominK-prajer : 
• Ble^«d art Thou, Lord, oar Go(l, King 
o( the world, that Thou hast not maile 
mo a stranger fa Gentile) ... a Borvant 

molt refer to the detailed accoiuit in sucb 

works as Weber, System d. »lt0Mf 
Tbeol. pp. 280 kc. Indeed, then h * 
limit to Buoh eitravagances. The »*■ 
itself had been creatfldon acooont of ''* 
meritH of Ismel, andU eostainedl^tl'* 
even as all nations only oontjnoe liji* 
SOD of this (Shemoth B. 16, 28; Bia» 
R. 2) 


among the Pharisees : ' I last twice a week, and I give CHAP. 

that I acquire.' ' The firet of these was in pursnance of xix 

f some ' more righteous than the rest,' who, as previously 

jted on the second and fifth days of the week (Mondays 

ys).* Bnt, perhaps, we should not forget that these ■TMD.isa 

: regular market days, when the country-people came to 

id there were special Services in the Synagt^es, and 

hedrin met — so that these saints in Israel would, at the 

ttract and receive special notice for their fasts. As for 

bout giving tithes of all that he acquired — not only 

fruits, &c. — it has already been explained,' that this 
;he distinctive characteristics of ' the sect of the Phari- 
- practice in this respect may be summed up in these 
3 Mishnah : '' ' He tithes all that he eats, all that he ° i*™*^ '■ ' 

that he buys, and he is not a guest with an unlearned 

fiaArez, so as not possibly to partake of what may have 

I it may not be necessary, yet one or two quotations will 
" how truly this picture of the Pharisee was taken from 
the following prayer of a Rabbi is recorded : ' I thank 
d my God, that Thou hast put my part with those who 
idemy, and not with those who sit at the comers [money- 
1 traders]. For, I rise early and they rise early : I rise 

words of the Law, and they to vain things. I labour 

hour ; I labour and receive a reward, they labour and 

ward, I run and they run : I run to the life of the world 

d they to the pit of destruetion.'" Even more closely 'Urr. w* 

lis thanksgiving, which a Rabbi puts into the mouth of 

■d of the world, judge me not as those who dwell in the 

such as Rome] : among whom there is robbery, and 

, and vain and false swearing.'*' lastly, as regards the ■'Emb. si», 

it of Rabbinism, we recall such painful sayings as those " i^a 

mon ben Jochai, to which reference has already been 

ably this, that if there were only two righteous men in 

e and his son were these ; and if only one, it was he I ' ',aw^°* 

md picture, or scene, in the Parable sets before us the p-<<fc"^ 

3 of feeling from that of the Pharisee. Only, we must 

.d, that, as the Pharisee is not blamed for his giving of 

yet for his good-doing, real or imaginary, so the prayer 


of the Publican is not answered, because he was a sinuer. Id both 
cases what decides the rejection or acceptance of the pnyer ii^ 
whether or not it was -prayer. The Pharisee retains the righteom- 
nesB which he had claimed for himself, whatever its valae ; aod tlit 
Publican receives the righteousness which he asks : both have whit 
the; desire before Crod. If the Pharisee ' stood bj himself,' agui 
from others, so did the Publican : * standing a&r off,' viz. from tkt 
Pharisee — quite far back, as became one who felt himself unworthj 
to mingle with God's people. In accordance with this : 'He woold 
not BO much as lift ' his eyes to heaven,' as men generally do ii 
prayer, * but smote his ' breast ' — as the Jews still do in the nuNl 
solemn part of their confession on the Day of Atonement — * imyn^ 
God be merciful to me the sinner.' The definite article is oxd 
to indicate that he felt, ae if he alone were a sinner — nay, tir 
sinner. Not only, as has been well remarked,' ' does he not tlml 
of any one else ' (cU nemiiie alio homvne cogitat), while the PhariM 
had thought of every one else ; but, as he had taken a position not it 
front of, but behind, every one else, so, in contrast to the FhaiiiM^ 
who had regarded every one but himself as a sinner, the Pnblicu 
regarded every one else as righteous compared with him ' the sinna.' 
And, while the Pharisee felt no need, and uttered no petition, tbt 
Publican felt only need, and uttered only petition. The one sppeiiti 
to himself for justice, the other appealed to God for mercy. 

More complete contrast, therefore, could not be imagiued. Anl 
once more, as between the Pharisee and the Publican, the ncnrint 
and the real, that before men and before God, there is sharp c<ntii4 
and the lesson which Christ bad so often pointed is again set fa4 
not only in regard to the feelings which the Pharisees entertaiiwil 
but also to the gladsome tidings of pardon to the lost : ' I say (Ot» 
you. This man went down to his house justified above the other'fw 
according to the better reading. Trap' ixetvov]. In other words, tl* 
sentence of righteousness as from God with which the Publican wa* 
home was above, far better than, the sentence of righteonsnew » 
pronounced by himself, with which the Pharisee returned. Ito 
saying casts also light on such comparisons as between 'tW 
righteous ' elder brother and the pardoned prodigal, or the ninrtj' 
nine that ' need no repentance ' and the lost that was found, * 
on such an utterance as this : * Except your righteousness bI»'' 
exceed the righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees, ye sbiU >* 


no case enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.'' And so the Parable cbap. 

«ndB with the general principle, so often enunciated : ' For every one xix 

that ezalteth himself shall be abased ; and he that humbleth himself • si. Hut. t. 

ahall be exalted.' And vith this general teaching of the Parable 

fully accords the instruction of Christ to His disciples concerning 

■the reception of Uttle children, which immediately follows.'' '^ui^iJii 

3. The Parable with which this eeriea closes — that of the Un- 
mermfvl Servant,' can be treated more briefly, since the cirenm- -stiiatt 
BtancM leading Qp to it have already been explained in chapter iii. 
of this Book, We are now reaching the point where the solitary 
narrative of St. Lake again merges with those of the other Evan- 
gelists. That the Parable was spoken before ChiisVe finaX joomey 
to Jerusalem, appears from St. Matthew's Gospel.* On the other J,^,*""' 
hand, as we compare what in the Gospel by St. Luke follows on the 
Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican * with the circumstances in l^i^^]^*, 
which the Parable of the Unmerciful Servant is introduced, we cannot 
&il to perceive inward cotmection between the narratives of the two 
Evangelists, confirming the conclusion, arrived at on other grounds, 
that the Parable of the Unmerciful Servant belongs to the Peneau 
leries, and closes it. 

Its connection with the Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican 
liea in this, that Pharisaic self-righteousness and contempt of others 
nay easily lead to unforgiveness and nnmercifulness, which are 
ntteriy incompatible with a sense of our own need of Divine mercy 
wid {(H-giveness. And so in the Gospel of St. Matthew this Parable 
Mows on the exhibition of a self-righteous, unmerciful spirit, 
riuch would reckon up how often we should forgive, forgetful of 
^■m own need of absolute and unlimited pardon at the hands of 
6od'— a spirit, moreover, of harshness, that could look down upon !j^^j^|^*i 
Quilt's 'little ones,' in forgetfulness of our own need perhaps of 
mUisg off even a right hand or foot to enter the Kingdom of 
EetTen.i • st Mstt. 

In studying this Parable, we mast once more remind ourselves of poiai'm 
w general canon of the need of distinguishing between what is 
**eidial in a Parable, as directly bearing on its lessons, and what in 
*erely introduced for the sake of the Parable itself, to give point 
to it« main teaching. In the present instance, no sober interpreter 
*iiilid regard of the essence of the Parable the King's conunand to 
•fill into slavery the first debtor together with his wife and children. 
"- ie simply a historical trait, introducing what in analogous circom- 
vtances might happen in real life, in order to point the lesson, that 


BOOK a man's strict desert before God is utter, hopeless, and etenml nno 
ly and loss. Similarly, when the promise of the debtor is thus intio- 
duced : * Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all,' it can only be 
to complete in a natural manner the first part of the Parabolic histoiy 
and to prepare for the second, in which forbearance is asked by a 
fellow-servant for the small debt which he owes. Lastly, in the 
same manner, the recall of the King's original forgiveness of tbe 
great debtor can only be intended to bring out the utter inoon* 
patibility of such harshness towards a brother on the part of one 
who has been consciously forgiven by God his great debt. 

Thus keeping apart the essentials of the Parable from the aoa- 
dents of its narration, we have three distinct scenes, or parts, in thii 
story. In the first, our new feelings towards our brethren are traced 
to our new relation towards God, as the proper spring of all our 
thinking, speaking, and acting. Notably, as regards forgiveness, we 
are to remember the Kingdom of God : * Therefore has the Kingdon 
of God become like' — * therefore': in order that thereby we mif 
learn the duty of absolute, not limited, forgiveness — not that of 
* seven,' but of * seventy times seven.' And now this likeness rf 
the Kingdom of Heaven is set forth in the Parable of *a man,! 
King ' (as the Rabbis would have expressed it, * a king of flesh anJ 
blood '), who would * make his reckoning ' {avvalpsiv) * with his 8»» 
vants ' — certainly not his bondservants, but probably the goveriKJn 
of his provinces, or those who had charge of the revenue iri 
finances. *But after he had begun to reckon' — not necessarily i^ 
the very beginning of it — * one was brought to him, a debtw of t* 
thousand talents.' Reckoning them only as Attic talents (1 talent* 
60 minas = 6,000 dinars) this would amount to the enormous sum* 
about two and a quarter millions sterling. No wonder, that «*^ 
who during his administration had been guilty of such pecul«ti*» 
or else culpable negligence, should, as the words * brought to ki* 
imply, have been reluctant to face the king. The Parable fitffl*^ 
implies, that the debt was admitted ; and hence, in the course cT 
• Ex. xxii. 3; ordinary ludicial procedure — according to the Law of Moses,^ fsA 
*7 * * the universal code of antiquity — that * servant,' with his family •» 
all his property, was ordered to be sold,^ and the returns paid iote' 
the treasury. 

Of course, it is not suggested that the * payment ' thus maifr 
had met his debt. Even this would, if need were, confirm the vicir^ 

* Accordingly, these servants could not have been * bondservants,' as in. the maigia 
of the R. V. 


previously expressed, that this trait belongs not to the essentials of chap. 
the Parable, but to the details of the narrative. So does the pro- xix 
mise, with which the now terrified * servant,' as he cast himself at the ' ' 
feet of the King, supported his plea for patience : * I will pay thee 
all.' In truth, the narrative takes no notice of this, but, on the 
other hand, states: 'But, being moved with compassion, the lord of 
that servant released him [from the bondage decreed, and which had 
virtually begun with his sentence], and the debt forgave he him.' * 
A more accurate representation of our relation to God could not be 
made. We are the debtors to our heavenly King, Who has entrusted 
to US the administration of what is His, and which we have pur* 
loined or misused, incurring an unspeakable debt, which we can 
never discharge, and of which, in the course of justice, unending 
bondage, misery, and utter ruin would be the proper sequence. But, 
if in humble repentance we cast ourselves at His Feet, He is ready, 
in infinite compassion, not only to release us from meet pimishment, 
but — O blessed revelation of the Gospel ! — to forgive us the debt. 

It is this new relationship to God which must be the foundation 

and the rule for our new relationship towards our fellow-servants. 

And this brings us to the second part, or scene, in this Parable. 

Here the lately pardoned servant finds one of his fellow-servants, who 

owes him the small sum of 100 dinars, about 41. 108. Mark now 

th« sharp contrast, which is so drawn as to give point to the Parable. 

In the first case, it was the servant brought to acoauTU, and that 

Wore the Kvng ; here it is a aervcmt finding, and that his feUow- 

^ffvant ; in the first case, he owed talents, in the second, dinars (a 

ftx-thousandth part of them) ; in the first, ten thousand talents ; in 

the second, one hundred dinars. Again, in the first case payment is 

^7 demanded, while in the second the man takes his fellow-servant 

ky the throat — a not unconmion mode of harshness on the part of 

^ffioan creditors — and says : * Pay what,' or, according to the better 

'^•ding, * if thou owest anything.' And, lastly, although the words 

^ the second debtor are almost the same ^ as those in which the 

fot debtor besought the King's patience, yet no mercy is shown, 

but he is ^ cast ' [with violence] into prison, till he have paid what 

tug due. 

It can scarcely be necessary to show the incongruousness or the 

' Mark the emphatic position of the servant who promised to pay 'all '(▼ei*- 26) 

words In the originaL promised moro than he could posaihlj 

< looofding to the better reading, the perform ; while he who andertook what 

word ' all * in ver. 29 should be left out he might reasonably perform, did not 

—and the omission is significant. The say * all.' 



» St. Katt. 
xviiU 35 

* For ex- 
ample, Sbem. 


* Bemidb. R. 
19, ed. 
Warab., p. 
77 a 

Bbem. B. 81, 
Parable of a 
aervant par- 
l<4Qinc( the 
King's tiea- 


guilt of such conduct. But this is the object of the third part, or 
scene, in the Paxable. Here — again for the sake of pictorialness — the 
other servants are introduced as exceedingly sorry, no doubt about the 
fete of their fellow-servant, especially in the circumstances of the caae. 
Then they come to their lord, and * clearly set forth,' or ^explain' 
{Suia-a<l>6iv) what had happened, upon which the Unmerciful Servant 
is summoned, and addressed as ^ wicked servant,' not only because 
he had not followed the example of his lord, but because, after 
having received such immense fevour as the entire remission of bis 
debt on entreating his master, to have refused to the entreaty of 
his fellow-servant even a brief delay in the payment of a small snm 
argued want of all mercy and positive wickedness. And the words 
are followed by the manifestation of righteous anger. As he has 
done, so is it done to him — and this is the final application of the 
Parable.* He is delivered * to the tormentors,' not in the seose of 
being toriaented by them, which would scarcely have been just, but 
in that of being handed over to such keepers of the prison, to whom 
criminals who were to be tortured were delivered, and who executed 
such punishment on them: in other words, he is sent to the 
hardest and severest prison, there to remain till he should pay aU 
that was due by him — that is, in the circumstances, for ever. Ab^ 
here we may again remark, without dravdng any dogmatic inferences 
from the language of the Parable, that it seems to proceed on thes^ 
two assumptions : that sufi'ering neither expiates guilt, nor in itscU 
amends the guilty, and that as sin has incurred a debt which can nev^^ 
be discharged, so the banishment, or rather the loss and misery ^ 
it, will be endless. 

We pause to notice, how near Rabbinism has come to tb^ 
Parable, and yet how far it is from its sublime teaching. At ^*** 
outset we recall that unlimited forgiveness — or, indeed, for m^^ 
than the farthest limit of three times — was not the doctrine ^ 
Rabbinism. It did, indeed, teach how freely God would forg* 
Israel, and it introduces a similar Parable of a debtor appealing 
his creditor, and receiving the fullest and freest release of mer^y^* 
and it also draws from it the moral, that man should similarly sb^ 
mercy ; but it is not the mercy of forgiveness from the heart, bu^ 
forgiveness of money-debts to the poor,*^ or of outward injuries,* ^^ 
the mercy of benevolence and beneficence to the wretched.* "^ 
the Gospel-conception of forgiveness, even as that of mercy, c^^ 
only come by blessed experience of the infinitely higher forgiveJ^^" 


and the incomparably greater mercy, which the pardoned sinner has 
received in Christ from onr Father in Heaven. 

Bnt to HB all there is the deepest BeriousnesB in the warning 
against oomercifulnesB ; and that, even though we remember that 
the case here referred to is only that of unwillingness to forgive 
from the heart an offending brother who actually asks for it. Yet, 
if not the sin, the temptation to it is very real to us all — perhaps 
rather nnconeciously to ourselves than conscionsly. For, how often 
is our forgiveness in the heart, as well as from the heart, narrowed by 
limitations and burdened with conditions ; and is it not of the very 
essence of sectarianism to condemn without mercy him who does 
not come up to our demands — ay, and until he shall have come up 
to them to the uttermost &rthing ? 



(St. Luke xili. 23-30, 31-35; kIt. 1-11, 2(i-SB ; xvii, I-IO.) 

Feom the Parables we now turn to such Discourses of the Lwd m 
belong to (his period of His Ministry, Their coasideratioD maybe 
the more brief, that throughout we find points of correspondeocentii 
previous or later portions of His teaching. 

Thus, the first of these Disnourses, of which we have an outJine,' 
recalls some passages in the ' Sermon on the Mount,' '' as well ■* 
what oar Lord had said on the occasion of healing the servant of the 
centurion." But, to take the first of these parallelisms, the differences 
" are only the more marked for the similarity of form. These pron 
incontestably, not only the independence of the two Evangelists* in 
their narratives, but, along with deeper underlying unity of thon^ 
in the teaching of Christ, its different application to different drcoDH 
stances and persons. Let us mark this in the Discourse as oatliseo 
by St. Luke, and so gain fresh eridential confirmation of the tmit 
worthiness of the Evangelic records. 

The words of our Lord, as recorded hy .St. Luke," are uot spoken, 
as in * The Sermon on the Mount,' in connectioD with His teaohii^ 
to His disciples, but are in reply to a question addressed to Him by 
some one — we can scarcely doubt, a representative of the FharisecB: *" 
' Lord, are they few, the saved ones [that are being saved] ? ' Viewed 
in connection with Christ's immediately preceding teaching abou^ 
the Kingdom of Grod in its wide and deep spread, as the gw»*' 
Mustard-Tree from the tiniest seed, and as the Leaven hid, lAicl* 
pervaded three measures of meal, we can scarcely doubt that tt^ 
word ' saved ' bore reference, not to the eternal state of the soul, btt*" 
to admission to the benefits of the Kingdom of God — the Mesdasic 
Kingdom, with its privileges and its judgments, such as the Pharisee^ 
understood it. The question, whether * few ' were to be saved, could 
not have been put from the Pharisaic point of view, if understood of 


personal salvation ; ' while, on the other hand, if taken as applying 
to part in the near-expected Messianic Kingdom, it has its distinct 
parallel in the Bahbinic statement, that, as regarded the days of 
the Messiah (His Kingdom), it would be as with reference t« the 
entrance into the land of promise, when only two (Joshua and Caleb), 
out of all that generation, were allowed to have part in it.* Again, it ' 
is only when understanding both the question of this Pharisee and 
the reply of our Lord as applying to the Kingdom of the Messiah — 
though each viewing * the Kingdom ' from his own standpoint — that 
ve can understand the answering words of Christ in their natural 
and obvious sense, without either straining or adding to them a 
dogmatic gloss, soch as could not have occurred to His hearers at the 

Thus viewed, we can mark the characteristic differences between 
this Discourse and the parallels in ' the Sermon on the Mount,' and 
understand their reason. As regarded entrance into the Messianic 
Kingdom, this Pharisee, and those whom he represented, are told, 
that this Kingdom was not theirs, as a matter of course — their question 
as to the rest of the world being only, whether few or many would 
ahare in it — bat that all must 'struggle^ [agonise] to enter in through 
the narrow door.' * When we remember, that in ' the Sermon on the 
Mount' the call was only to 'enter in,' we feel that we have now 
reached a period, when the access to * the narrow door ' was 
obgtiucted by the enmity of so many, and when it needed ' violence ' 
to Iveak through, and ' take the Kingdom ' ' by force,' '' This ^ 
personal breaking through the opposing multitude, in order to enter 
in through the narrow door, was in opposition to the many — the 
PWiiees and Jews generally^who were seeking to enter in, in their 
"^ way, never doubting success, but who would discover their 
l^nible mistake. Then, ' when once the Master of the house is risen 
lip)' to welcome His guests to the banquet, and has shut to the door, 
*kile they, standing without, vainly call upon Him to open it, and 
"c replies ; • I know you not whence ye are,' would they begin to 

„.^It H difficult to oaderstaDd how do not Btrn^Ie for adnuauon.' But 

'"WMke could h&ve refeTred to Succ. would an; one be refused who tought, 

™^ta a pv&llel, since unfthing more desired, or wished ! 

"'(Mghlj contruy to all Christ's teach. * The word implies a real combat to 

"V cm icarcelf be imagined. Olhei- get at the narrow door, not 'a targe 

■* tin the paiaUel is inapt. The crowd . . . struggling for admission.' 

""iOMraaierwillfiiid thepessageinde- The werb oocnrs besides in tha following 

'*iliiiAi(if^^,onlCor.xiii. 12(p.G62). passages: St. John xviU. 3Gj 1 Cor. iz. 

'ThBi, Canon f^l makes this distinc- SB; Col. i. 89; iv. 13; 1 Tim. vi. 18; 

Jw: 'They who are said to seak, seek 2Tim, iv. T. 

(u.dsrinandwlah)and nomore. They < So according to the beat reading. 


BOOK remind Him of those covenant-privileges on which, as Israel after 
IV the flesh, they had relied (^ we have eaten and drunk in Thy presence, 
and Thou hast taught in our streets '). To this He would reply by a 
repetition of His former words, now seen to imply a disavowal of all 
mere outward privileges, as constituting a claim to the Kingdom, 
grounding alike His disavowal and His refusal to open on their 
inward contrariety to the King and His Kingdom : * Depart firom me, 
all ye workers of iniquity.' It was a banquet to the friends of the 
King : the inauguration of His Kingdom. When they found the door 
shut, they would, indeed, knock, in the confident expectation that 
their claims would at once be recognised, and they admitted. And 
when the Master of the house did not recognise them, as they had 
expected, and they reminded Him of their outward connection, He 
only repeated the same words as before, since it was not outward bat 
inward relationship that qualified the guests, and theirs was not 
friendship, but antagonism to Him. Terrible would then be their wt* 
row and anguish, when they would see their own patriarchs (* we have 
eaten and drunk in Thy Presence ') and their own prophets (* ThflO 
hast taught in our streets ') within, and yet themselves were excluded 
from what was peculiarly theirs — while from all parts of the heathen 
world the welcome guests would flock to the joyous feast. And here 
pre-eminently, in opposition to Pharisaic claims and self-righteouft* 
ness, would the saying hold good : ' There are last which shall be first, 
•comp. aiBo and there are first which shall be last.' * 

Bt. Matu 

^x. 80 ; XX. As a further characteristic difference from the parallel passage in 

* the Sermon on the Mount,' we note, that there the reference seems 
not to any special privileges in connection with the Messianic 
Kingdom, such as the Pharisees expected, but to admission into 

▼i%f^*2* ^^® Kingdom of Heaven generally.^ In regard to the latter also 
the highest outward claims would be found unavailing ; but th^ 
expectancy of admission was grounded rather on what was d(/M^ 
than on mere citizenship and its privileges. And here it deserved 
special notice, that in St. Luke's Gospel, where the claim is tha*> 
of fellow-citizenship (* eaten and drunk in Thy Presence, anci 
Thou hast taught in our streets '), the reply is made, * I know yotx 
not whence ye are ; ' while in * the Sermon on the Mount,' wher^ 
the claim is of what they had done in His Naipe, they are toW - 

* I never knew you.' In both cases the disavowal emphatically bear* 
on the special plea which had been set up. With this, another 
slight difference may be connected, which is not brought out in th^ 
Authorised or in the Revised Version. Both in the * Sermoiv oH 


e Mount" and in St. Luke's Gospel,'' they who are bidden depart are chap. 
signated aa ' workers of iniquity,' But, whereas in St. Matthew's xx 
lapel the term (avo/iia) really means ' lawlessness,' the word used in • et. XMt. 
it of St. Lake should be rendered 'unrighteousress'' {aSiKia), bat.i.niB 
lUB, the one class are excluded, despite the deeds which they plead, ^^- " 

■ their real contrariety to God'a Law ; the other, despite the plea of 
izenship and privileges, for their unrighteoueness." And here we • Bom. u. 
ly also note, as a last difference between the two Gospels, that in 

a prediction of the future bliss from which they were to be 
eluded, the Gospel of St. Luke, which had reported the plea that 
J had ' taught ' in their ' streets,' adds, as it were in answer, to the 
mes of the Patriarchs,'' mention of ' all the prophets.' t^n"*" 

2. The next Discourse, noted by St. Luke,' had been spoken 'in • st. Lake 
at very day,' ' aa the last. It was occasioned by a pretended 
xning of ' certain of the Pharisees ' to depart from Persea, which, 
th Galilee, was the territory of Herod Antipas, as else the Tetrarch 
inld kill Him. We have previously* shown reason for suppos- 
g secret intrignea between the Pharisaic party and Herod, and 
tributing the final imprisonment of the Baptist, at least in part, 

their machinations. We also remember, how the conscience of 
e Tetrarch connected Christ with His murdered I^'orerunner, and 
at rightly, since, at least ao far as the Pharisees wrought on the fears 

that intensely jealous and suspicious prince, the imprisonment of 
bn was as much due to his announcement of the Messiah as to the 
Diity of Herodias. On these grounds we can easily understand 
at Herod should have wished to see Jesus,' not merely to gratify ' st. Lnks 
Hosity, nor in obedience to superstitious impulses, but to convince 
oaself, whether He was really what was said of Him, and also to get 
■^m into his power. Probably, therefore, the danger of which these 

■ arisees spoke might have been real enough, and they might have 
&cial reasons for knowing of it. But their suggestion, that Jesus 
ckuld depart, could only have proceeded from a wish to get Him 

t of Persea, where, evidently. His works of healing^ were largely "Mipota, 
'^acting and influencing the people, Luke iiu. » 

Bat if our Lord would not be deterred by the fears of His disciples 
»Jn going into Judsea,*" feeling that each one had his appointed work- 'fs'"'"' 
S diiy, iu the light of which he was safe, and during the brief dura- 

' It ig ch«racteri»tio of 'higher' criti- in St. Lute's as a retort upon PHTine 

■^n when Ililge^feld declares that the or Jewish Christianil v I 

lwImsdcm ' in Bt. Matthew's Gospel is ' Perhaps we should rather read ' hoar.' 

''Coded aa a ootert hit at PauUne ' See Book HI. chap, xxviti. 
^tiitianity, and the ' aorigbteousnesa ' 





tioD of which he was bound to ' walk,' far legs would He recede befote 
Hie enemies. Pointing to their secret intrigues, He bade thezn, if 
they chose, go back to ' that fox,' and give to his low cunning, and to 
all similar attempts to hinder or arrest Hia Ministry, what would bea 
decisive answer, since it unfolded what He clearly foresaw in the new 
future. ' Depart ' ? ' — ^yes, ' depart ' ye to tell ' that fox,' I have still 
a brief and an appointed time ' to work, and then ' I am perfected,' 
in the sense in which we all readily understand the e^tression, u 
applying to His Work and Mission. ' Depart ! ' ' Yes, I must " depart,* 
OF go My brief appointed time .- I know that at the goal of it i> 
death, yet not at the hands of Herod, but in Jerusalem, the slao^te^ 
house of them that " teach in her streets." ' 

And BO, remembering that this meesage to Herod was spoken in 
the very day, perhaps the very hour that He had declared hot 
falsely ' the workers of wickedness ' claimed adnussion on account of 
the 'teaching in their streets,' and that they woold be excli^ 
from the fellowship, not only of the fathers, but of * all the prophcti' 
whom they called their own — we see peculiar meaning in the refer- 
ence to Jerusalem as the place where all the prophets perished.' 
One, Who in no way indulged in illusions, but knew that He hatl in 
appointed time, during which He would work, and at the end of 
which He would ' perish,' and where He would so perish, could not 1* 
deterred either by the intrigues of the Pharisees nor by the thon^t 
of what a Herod might attempt — not do, which latter was in fai 
other hands. But the thought of Jerusalem — of what it was, vbit 
it might have been, and what would come to it — may well !»« 
forced from the lips of Him, Who wept over it, a cry of mingled 
anguish, love, and warning.'' It may, indeed, be, that these TeiJ 
words, which are reported by St, Matthew in another, and nunite«tlj 
most suitable, connection,"^ are here quoted by St. Luke, bec«i» 
they fully express the thought to which Christ here first gave distinct 
utterance. But some such words, we can scarcely doubt. He did 
speak even now, when pointing to Hia near Decease in Jerusalem. 

' The words ' to-(iay, and lo-moirow, 
and the third day,' must not be taken aa 
a literal, but as a well-known figurative 
eitpression. Thus we are t«lfl (Mechilta, 
Par. Bo, 1S> towards end, ed. Weitt, p. 
27 i), -There is a "to-morrow" which 
U nom [refers to the immediate present], 
and a " to-murrow " of a later time,' indi- 
cating a tileil period connected with the 
present. The latter, for example, in the 
passage illostnted in the Rabbinic quota- 

tion just made : Ei. xiii. 14, ' It «I»!1 1* 
when thy son shall aak tbee [Utemllf] 
tu-morrow," in our A. V. ' in time to MB*- 
So also Josh. i;tii. 24. 'The thirfitV 
in sucli connection would be ttiDI Kfl^ 

' Even (he death of John tbe JtaWi* 
ma;, as indicated, be said to bare m<* 
compaased in Jerusalem. 

* Tiio words will be considenid incoO' 
nection with that ptaaaae. 


3. The next in ardei of the IHsoouTBes recorded by St. Loke * is chat. 
at which prefiu^ the Parable of * the Great Supper,' explained in XX 
previoufl chapter.^ The Babbinic views on the Sabbath-Law have .stLnta 
en 80 folly discussed, that a very brief comnieiitation will here f^^ 
fiSce. It appears, that the Lord condescended to accept the iuvi- >*<■ 
Aon to a Sabbath-meal in the house ' of one of the Rulers of the 
lariBees' — perhaps one of the Rulers of the Synagogue in which 
ey bad jnst worshipped, and where Christ may have tanght. 
itliout here discnssing the motives for this invitation, its accep- 
Qce was certainly made use of to ' watch Him.' And the man 
th the dropsy had, no doabt, been introduced for a treacherous 
irpose, although it is not necessary to suppose that he himself had 
en privy to iL On the other hand, it is characteristic of the 
adouB Lord, that, with full knowledge of their purpose, He sat down 
th such companions, and that He did His Work of power and love 
oreetrained by their evil thoughts. But, even so, He must turn 
leir wickedness also to good account. Yet we mark, that He first 
ismisaed the man healed of the dropsy before He reproved the 
Wisees." It was better so — for the sake of the guests, and for 'StLmM 
le healed man himself, whose mind quite new and blessed Sabbath- 
loughts would fill, to which all controversy would be jarring. 

And, after his departure, the Lord first spake to them, as was 
Is wont, coQceming their misapplication of the Sabbath-I^w, to 
lich, indeed, their own practice gave the lie. They deemed it 
Llawfol ' to heal ' on the Sabbath-day, though, when He read their 
oughts and purposes as against Him, they wonid not answer His 
lesdon on the point.* And yet, if ' a son,' or even an ox,' of any " tt. b. * 

them, had ' Mien into a pit,' they would have found some valid 
Sal reason for pulling him out ! Then, as to their Sabbath-feast, 
td their invitation to Him, when thereby they wished to lure Him 

• «tU — and, indeed, their much-boasted hospitality: all was cha- 
^ct^istic of Fharisaium — only external show, with utter absence of 
1 real love ; only Belf-assumption, pride, and self-righteonsness, 
^ether with c<Mitempt of all who were regarded as religiously or 
'teilectoally beneath them — chiefly of ' the unlearned ' and ' sinners,' 
lose in ' the streets and lanes ' of their city, whom they considered 

* *the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind.'* Even -Tep.ii 
iQODg themselves there was strife about ' the first places ' — such as, 
'^baps, Christ had on that occasion witnessed,' amidst mock pro- ' "■ '-^^ 
'csaons of humility, when, perhaps, the master of the house had 

> 8o — and not ' ass ' — accoiding to the beat raadiug. 


BOOK afterwards, in true Pharisaic jaehion, proceeded to re-airauge die 
IV guests according to their supposed dignity. And even the Rabbii 

sr. ID had given advice to the same effect as Christ's* — and of thia Hit 
words may have reminded them.' 

But further — addressing him who had so treacheFoasly bidden 
Him to this feast, Christ showed how the principle of Pharisaisn 
consisted in self-seeking, to the necessary exclusion of all true lore. 

r. u-i( Referriug, for the fuller explanation of His meaning,'' to a ptevicu 

luptei chapter," we content onraelves here with the remark, that this sdf- 
seeking and self-righteousness appeared even in what, perhaps, thej 
most boasted of — ^their hospitality. For, if in an earlier Jewidi 
record we read the beautiful words : * Let thy house be opea 

b.i.t towards the street, and let the poor be the sons of thy house,' * ie 

b. dfl B. have, also, thia later comment on them," that Job had thus had hii 
house opened to the four quarters of the globe for the poor, ud 
that, when his calamities befell him, he remonstrated with God <■ 
the ground of his merits in this respect, to which answer was mult, 
that he had in this matter come very fiu: short of the merit! rf 
Abraham. So entirely self-introspective and self-seeking did Bab- 
binism become, and so contrary was its outcome to the spirit of 
Christ, the inmost meaning of A^Tiose Work, as well as Words, »« 
entire self-forgetfulness and self-surrender in love, 

, Lokr 4. In the fourth Discourse recorded by St. Luke,' we pass fiw 

the parenthetic account of that Sabbath-meal in the house of the 
* Ruler of the Pharisees,' back to where the narrative of the Phiri- 

iL ii-s« sees' threat about Herod and the reply of Jesus had left us.* AiA 
if proof were required of the great influence exercised by Jefltfr 
and which, as we have suggested, led to the attempt of the Fhariieef 
to induce Christ to leave Pertea, it would be found in the openiu; 

ir.» notice,'' as well as in the Discourse itself which He spoke. Chii* 
did depart — from that place, though not yet from Pera» ; but irith 
Him ' went great moltitudes.' And, in view of their professed adbe- 
siou, it was needful, and now more emphatically than ever, to set 
before them all that discipleship really involved, alike of cost and of 
strength — the two latter points being illustrated by brief * Parables' 
(in the wider sense of that term). Substantially, it was only what 
Christ had told the Twelve, when He sent them od their fint 

Miiii. I^Iission.* Only it was now cast in a ^ stronger mould, as befitted 
the altered circumstances, in the near prospect of Christ's condem- 
nation, with all that this would involve to His followers. 


At the ontaet we mark, tbat we are not here told what constituted chap. 
he tme disciple, but what would prevent a mnn from becoming such. xx 
.gain, it waa now no longer (bb in the earlier address to the Twelve), ' 

bat he who loved the nearest and dearest of earthly kin more than 
luist — and hence clave to such rather than to Him — was not 
'orthy of Him ; nor that he who did not take his cross and follow 
fter Him was not worthy of the Christ. Since then the enmity 
ad ripened, and discipleship become impossible without actual re- 
nnciation of the nearest relationship, and, more than that, of life 
:«elf.' The term * hate,' of coarse, does not imply hatred of parents ' *■ "J^ 
r relatives, or of life, in the ordinary sense. But it points to this, 
hat, as outward separation, consequent upon men'e antagonism to 
Christ, waa before them in the near future, so, in the present, 
nward separation, a renunciation in mind and heart, preparatory 
to that outwardly, was absolutely necessary. And this immediate 
call was illustrated in twofold manner. A man who was about to 
begin building a tower, must count the cost of the whole." It was * tt. jno 
not sufficient that he was prepared to defray the expense of the found- 
ations ; he must look to the cost of the whole. So must they, 
10 becoming disciples, look not on what was involved in the present 
/allowing of Christ, but remember the cost of the final acknowledg- 
ment of JesuH. Again, if a king went to war, common prudence 
*oiild bid him consider whether his forces were equal to the great 
■outest before him ; else it were far better to withdraw in time, even 
hough discreditably, from what, in view of his weakness, would lead 
» miserable defeat.' So, and much more, must the intending ' iv. bi, aa 
^Bciple make complete inward surrender of all, deliberately count- 
iiig the cost, and, in view of the coming trial, ask himself whether 
he had, indeed, sufficient inward strength — the force of love to 
Christ — to conquer. And thus discipleship, then, and, in measure, 
to all time, involves the necessity of complete inward surrender of 
everything for the love of Christ, so that if, and when, the time of 
ootirard trial comes, we may be prepared to conquer in the fight.'' ° *•'•'* 
& fights well, who has first fought and conquered within. 

Or else, and here Christ breaks once more into that pithy Jewish 
proverb — only, oh ! how aptly, applying it to His disciples — ' Salt is 
good;' * salt, if it have lost its savour, wherewith shall it be salted?" ' "■"■" 
We have preferred to quote the proverb in its Jewish form," to show ' Beciwr. s 

^ ^ ^ ' lUllBl*,IS 

' Id the lUmnd : ,1^ tr^D 'KOa [has na evil odour, is spoiled] 'no '3 Kn^'D- 

VOL. n. X 


BOOK its popular origin. Salt in such condition was neither fit to inqmre 
the land, nor, on the other hand, to be mixed with the manure. Hw 
' disciple who had lost his diatinctiveneas would neither benefit Uk 
land, nor was he even fit, as it were, for the dunghill, and cooU 
only be cast out. And so, let him that hath ears to hear, bear tlie 

5. We have still to consider the last Discourses of Christ be&R 
^riL^[% the raising of Lazarus.* These, as addressed to the disciples,^ n 
kidLi have to connect with the Discourse just commented upon. In post 
of fact, part of these admonitions had already been spoken on a pre- 
'"■'st vious occasion, and that more fully, to the disciples in Galilee.' 
UM. xiuL Only we mnst again bear in znind the difference of circumstances 
uSE'lrii Here, they immediately precede the raising of Lazarus,^ and they 
*> form the close of Christ's public Ministry in Pereea. Hence they 

• sbjahsxi. gQ^g to us as Christ's parting admonitions to His Perffian fbJ- 


Thus viewed, they are intended to impress on the new disciplH i 

'^^"j" these four things: to be careful to giveno offence;* to be carefidlo 

, TT.J.4 take no offence j*^ to be simple and earnest in their faith, and abso- 

tya.t lutely to trust its all-prevailing power;* and yet, when they W 

made experience of it, not to be elated, but to remember their rel*- 

tion to their Master, that all was in His service, and that, after all, 

' TT. T-io. when everything had been done, they were but unprofitable servanls-* 

In other words, they urged upon the disciples holiness, love, futht 

and ser\-ice of self-surrender and humility. 

Most of these points have been already considered, when e*" 
plaining the similar admonitions of Christ in Galilee.' The fo^ 
parts of this Discourse are broken by the prayer of the Apostl^** 
who had formerly expressed their difficulty in regard to these vC? 

• BL VML requirements : ' ' Add unto us faith.' It was upon this that the Lo** 
fct,M,K spake to them, for their comfort, of the absolute power of even ti* 
' fit. Luk* smallest faith,^ and of the service and humility of faith." The lat** 
- TT, j-jo was couched in a Parabolic form, well calculated to impress on tb** 

those feelings which would keep them lowly. They were but s^ 
vants; and, even though they had done their work, the Master ^' 
pected them to serve Him, before they sat down to their own r>3-* 
and rest. Yet meal and rest there would be in the end. Only» 
there not be self-elation, nor weariness, nor impatience ; but let- "* 
Master and His service be all in all. Surely, if ever there w»» « 
Sec Book IV. chap. iii. 


hatic protest agaiost the fundamental idea of PbariBaism, as claim- 
1^ merit and reward, it was in the closing admonition of Christ's 
ablic Ministry in Ferssa: 'When ye shall have done all those 
lings which are commanded you, say. We are unprofitable servants ; 
e have done that which was our duty to do.' 

And with these parting words did He most effectually and for 
^er separate, in heart and spirit, the Church from the Synagogue, 




(St. John xi. l-5i.) 

Fkom listening to the teaching of Christ, we turn once more to foUai 
His working. It will be remembered, that the visit to Betlunj 
divides the periofl from the Feast of the Dedication to the bit 
Paschal week into two parts. It also forms the prelnde and prepi- 
ration for the awful events of the End. For, it was on that oocuiiB 
that the members of the Sanhedrin formally resolved on His DestL 
It now only remained to settle and carry out the plans for giring 
effect to their purjiose. 

This is one aspect of it. There is yet another and more solemn 
one. The raJsiDg of Lazarus marks the highest point (not in t^ 
Manifestation, but) in the Ministry of our Lord ; it is the climaxin 
a history where all is miraculous — the Person, the Life, the Woniii 
the Work. As regards Himself, we have here the fullest evideate 
alike of His Divinity and Humanity ; as regards those who witDew) 
it, the highest manifestation of faith and of imbelief. Here, on ihi* 
height, the two ways finally meet and part. And &om this liij^ 
IKiint — not only from the resolution of the Sanhedrists, but from th* 
raising of I^azanis — we have our first clear outlook on the Death isi 
Kesurrection of Christ, of which the raising of Lazarus was Ik 
typical prelude. I'"rom this height, also, have we an outlook i^ 
the gathering of the Church at His empty Tomb, where the j«mt«* 
words spoken at the grave of Lazarus received their full mem- 
ing — till Death shall be no more. But chiefly do we now tliint 
of it as the Miracle of Miracles in the history of the Christ. H* 
had, indeed, before this raised the dead ; but it had been in fci-** 
Galilee, and in circumstances essentially different. But not "^ 
would be one so well known as Lazarus, at the very gates of Jero*' 
lem, in the sight of all men, and amidst surroundings which admiH'' 


not of mistake or doubt. If this Miracle be true, ve iuBtinctively 
feel all is true ; and Spinoza was right in aayiog,' tiiat if he could 
believe the raising of LazaruR, be would tear to shreds bis system, 
and bombly accept the creed of Christians. 

But is it true ? We have reached a stage in this history when 
such a question, always most painful, might seem almost needless. 
For, gradually and with increasing clearness, we liave learned the 
trustworthiness of the Evangelic records ; and, as we have followed 
Him, the conviction has deepened into joyous assurance, that He, 
A^lio spake, lived, and wrought as none other, is in very deed the 
Christ of God. And yet we ask ourselves here this question again, 
en account of its absolute and infinite importance ; because this may 
be regarded as the highest and decisive moment in this History ; 
because, in truth, it is to the historical &ith of the Church what the 
great Confession of Peter was to that of the disciples. And, although 
such an inquiry may seem like the jarring of a discord in Heaven's 
own melody, we pursue it, feeling that, in so doing, we are not dift- 
casdBg what is doubtful, but rather setting forth the evidence of 
what is certain, for the coniinnation of the faith of our hearts, and, 
u we humbly trust, for the establishment of the &ith as it is in 

At the outset, we must here once more meet, however briefly, the 
preliaunaiy difficulty in regard to Miracles, of which the raising of 
Iwkrus is, we shall not say, the greatest — for comj>arison is not pos- 
able on such a point — but the most notable. Undoubtedly, a 
Uncle runs counter, not only to our experience, but to the facts on 
wbich onr experience is grounded ; and can onlj' be accounted for by 
* direct Divine interposition, which also runs counter to our eiperi- 
<»ie, although it cannot logically be said to run counter to the facts on 
*Iudi that experience is grounded. Beyond this it is impossible to 
go, gince the argument on other grounds than of experience — be it 
phenomenal [observation and historical information^ or real [know- 
™ge of laws and principles] — would necessitate knowledge alike of 
•U the laws of Nature and of alt the secrets of Heaven. 

On the other hand (as indicated in a previous i>art »), to argue 
"■i* point only on the ground of experience (phenomenal or real), 
**w not only reasoning ib priori, but in a vicious circle. It would 
'*lly amount to this: A thing has not been, because it cannot be ; 
*"<! it cannot be, because, so far as I know, it is not and has not 
'"^ But, to deny on such a priori prejudgment the possibility 
■ As quoted bj Gi>dft (ad loc,). ' Se« vol. 1. p. .iSO. 




» In the 
earlier edi- 
tions of his 
Vie de 


of Miracles, ultimately involves a denial of a Living, Beigning God* 
For, the existence of a God implies at least the possibility, in ceitain 
circumstances it may be the rational necessity, of Miracles* And 
the same grounds of experience, which tell against the oocorrence 
of a Miracle, would equally apply against belief in a God. We have 
as little ground in experience (of a physical kind) for the one as for 
the other. This is not said to deter inquiry, but for the sake of 
our argument. For, we confidently assert and challenge experiment 
of it, that disbelief in a God, or Materialism, involves infinitely more 
difficulties, and that at every step and in regard to all things, than 
the faith of the Christian. 

But we instinctively feel that such a Miracle as the raising of 
Lazarus ciills for more than merely logical formulas. Heart and 
mind crave for higher than questions of what may be logically possible 
or impossible. We want, so to speak, living evidence, and we have it 
We have it, first of all, in the Person of the Incarnate God, Who- 
not only came to abolish death, but in WTiose Presence the con- 
tinuance of disease and death was imi>ossible. And we have it abo 
in the narrative of the event itself. It were, indeed, an absurd de- 
mand to prove a Miracle, since to do so were to show that it was not 
ji Miracle. But we may be rationally asked these three things:. 
first, to show, that no other explanation is rationally ix>8sible than 
that wliich proceeds on the ground of its being a Miracle ; secondly,, 
to show, that such a view of it is consistent with itself and all the 
details of the narrative ; and, thirdly, that it is harmonious witL 
what i)recedes and what follows the narrative. The second and thiri 
of these arguments will be the outcome of our later study of the 
history of this event ; the first, that no other explanation of tbc 
narrative is rationally i)ossible, must now be briefly attempted. 

We may here dismiss, as what would not be entertained by anj 
one familiar with historical inquiries, the idea that such a nanatif^ 
could be an absolute invention, ungrounded on any fact. Again, W® 
may put aside as repugnant to, at least English, common sense, th^ 
theory that the narrative is consistent with the idea that LazarU^ 
was not really dead (the Rationalists). Nor would any one^ wb^ 
had tlie faintest sympathy with the moral standpoint of the Gro^^ 
pels, entertain the view of M. Renan^^ that it was all a * pious fiand 
concocted between all parties, and that, in order to convert Jerusalef^ 
by a signal miracle, Lazarus had himself dressed up as a dead bal^ 
and laid in the family tomb. Scarcely more rational is M. jReium ^ 
latest suggestion, that it was all a misunderstanding : Martha an^ 



Mary having told Jesus the wish of friends, that He should do chap. 
some notable miracle to convince the Jews, suggesting that they xxi 
would believe if one rose from the dead, when He had replied, that "" ' 
they would not believe even if Lazarus rose from his grave — and 
that tradition had transformed this conversation into an actual event ! 
Nor, finally, would English common sense readily believe (with Baur\ 
that the whole narrative was an ideal composition to illustrate what 
must be regarded as the metaphysical statement: * I am the Resur- 
rection and the Life.' Among ourselves, at least, no serious refutation 
of these and similar views can be necessary. 

Nor do the other theories advanced require lengthened discussion. 
The mythical explanation of Strauss is, that as the Old Testament had 
recorded instances of raising from the dead, so Christian tradition 
must needs ascribe the same to the Messiah. To this (without 
repeating the detailed refutation made by Renan and Baur\ it is 
8n£Bcient to reply : The previous history of Christ had already ofiFered 
such instances, why needlessly multiply them ? Besides, if it had 
been * a legend,' such full and minute details would not have been 
introdnced, and while the human element would have been suppressed, 
the miraculous would have been far more accentuated. Only one other 
theory on the subject requires notice : that the writer of the Fourth 
Gospel, or rather early tradition, had transformed the Parable of 
Dives and Lazarus into an actual event. In answer, it is sufficient 
to say : first, that (as previously shown) there is no connection 
between the Lazarus of the Parable and him of Bethany ; secondly, 
that, if it had been a Parable transformed, the characters chosen 
would not have been real persons, and that they were such is evident 
from the mention of the family in difierent circumstances in the 
tliree Synoptic Gospels," of which the writer of the Fourth Gospel •stLukex. 
was fiilly aware.^ Lastly, as Godet remarks, whereas the Parable MBtt.*xxvL 
^osQ^ by declaring that the Jews would not believe even if one rose Mark'xiv.'a 
ft>m the dead, the Narrative closes on this wise : ® * Many therefore ^3 ^^^ 
^ the Jews, which came to Mary and beheld that which He did, « st. John 
'^tieved on Him.' ' 

X do not quite understand, whether 

IV5^ct Dr. Ahhctt (Encycl. Brit., Art. 

^^J^pela,' pp. 837, 838) holds the « his- 

*J*^Cal accuracy ' of this narrative. Nor 

^^ ^o I miderstand such commentation 

^ It as he gives. In a foot-note he dis- 

7^^^ its ' complete discussion ' as foreign 

^ the purpose of his essay. He refers 

^» liowever, to the Pitrable of Dives and 


Lazarus, together with the comments on 
it of Li/fhtfoot in his Hone Hebr., and 
Wilnsche in his Beitr. z. Erl. d. Evange- 
lien. I have carefully examined both, 
and I cannot see that either or both con- 
tribute anything to help our understand- 
ing of the raising of Lazarus, or, indeed, 
anything on either subject that is strik- 
ing, or of special interest. 


BOOK In view of these proposed explanations, we appeal to the impftrHal 

IV reader, whether any of them rationally accounts for the origin and 
existence of this history in Apostolic tradition ? On the other hand, 
everything is clear and consistent on the supposition of the historical 
truth of this narrative : the minuteness of details ; the vividness and 
pictorialness of the narrative ; the characteristic manner in whidi 
Thomas, Martha, and Mary speak and act, in accordance with what 
we read of them in the other Gospels or in other parts of this Gospel; 
the Human affection of the Christ ; the sublime simplicity and ma- 
jesty of the manner of the Miracle ; and the effects of it on friend 
and foe. There is, indeed, this one difficulty (not objection), that 
the event is not mentioned in the Synoptic Gospels, But we know 
too little of the plan on which the Gospels, viewed as Lives of Christ, 
were constructed, to allow us to draw any sufficient inference firom 
the silence of the Synoptists, whilst we do know that the Jadsan 
and Jerusalem Ministry of Christ, except so far as it was absolotely 
necessary to refer to it, lay outside the plan of the Sjmoptic Gxrapeli, 
and formed the special subject of that by St. John. Lastly, wc 
should remember, that in the then state of thought the introduction 
of another narrative of raising from the dead could not have seemed 
to them of such importance as it appears to us in the present state 
of controversy — more especially, since it was so soon to be followed 
by another Resurrection the importance and evidential value of which 
far overshadowed such an event as the raising of Lazarus. Their Gali- 
lean readers bad the story of the raising of the widow's son at Nain, 
and of Jairus' daughter at Capernaum ; and the Roman world had not 
only all this, but the preaching of the Resurrection, and of pardoaDL 
and life in the Name of the Risen One, together with ocular demon- 
stration of the miraculous power of those who preached it. It 
mained for the beloved disciple, who alone stood under the Ctosb^p 
alone to stand on that height from which he had first and intense 
outlook upon His Death, and the Life which sprang from it, andB 
flowed into all the world. 

We may now, undisturbed by objections, surrender ourselves tc:3 
the sublimeness and solemnity of this narrative. Perhaps the 
briefly we comment on it the better. 

It was while in Persea, that this message suddenly reached thi 
Master from the well-remembered home at Bethany, * the village o^^ 
Mary ' — for obvious reasons, although the younger, she is first men^ 
tioned in this history — ' and her sister Martha,' concerning theii* 
(younger) brother Lazarus : * Lord, behold he whom Thou lovest is 


fiick ! ' They are apparently the very words which * the sisters ' bade chap. 
their messenger tell. We note as an important fact to be stored in xxi 
our memory, that the Lazarus, who had not even been mentioned in ' 

the only account preserved to us of a previous visit of Christ to 
Bethany," is described as * he whom Christ loved.' What a gap of ^^^^"^^ ""• 
untold events between the two visits of Christ to Bethany — and what 
modesty should it teach us as regards inferences from what is not 
recorded in the Gospels ! The messenger was apparently dismissed 
with this reply : ' This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory 
of God, in order that the Son of God may be glorified thereby.' We 
most here bear in mind, that this answer was heard by such of the 
Apostles as were present at the time.^ They would naturally infer 
from it that Lazarus would not die, and that his restoration would 
glorify Christ, either as having foretold it, or prayed for it, or efiFected 
it by His Will. Yet its true meaning, even, as we now see, its literal 
interpretation was, that its final upshot was not to be the death of 
Lazarus, but that it was to be for the glory of God, in order that 
Christ as the Son of God might be made manifest. And we learn, 
how much more full are the Words of Christ than they often appear 
to us ; and how truly, and even literally, they may bear quite another 
meaning than appears to our honest misapprehension of them — 
a meaning which only the event, the future, will disclose. 

And yet, probably at the very time when the messenger received 
hia answer, and ere he could have brought it to the sisters, Lazarus 
^^aa already dead ! Nor — and this should be specially marked — did 
th±s awaken doubt in the minds of the sisters. We seem to hear 
'he very words which at the time they said to each other, when each 
^f them afterwards repeated it to the Lord : * J-K)rd, if Thou hadst 
^^en here, my brother would not have died.'^ They probably 
thought the message had reached Him too late, that Lazarus would 
^^.ve lived if Christ had been appealed to in time, or had been able 
^ come — at any rate, if He had been there. Even in their keenest 
•^xig, there was no failure of trust, no doubt, no close weighing of 
^ojds on their part — only the confidence of love. Yet all this while 
'^^^ knew that Lazarus had died, and still He continued two whole 
^3^8 where He was, finishing His work. And yet — and this is sig- 
^^^cantly noted before anything else, alike in regard to His delay 

^* From the non-mention of Peter and words are the same, but the position of 

\^ prominence of Thomas it seems at the personal pronoun (/xow) * my ' brother 

T^ doabtful, whether aU the Apostles is significantly different (see Westcott 

^^re there. ad loc.). 
'AooordiBg to the best reading, the 


BOOK and to His after-conduct — He * loved Martha, and her sister, and 
IV Lazarus.' Had there been no after-history, or had it not been known 
to us, or before it became known, it might have seemed other- 
wise — ^and in similar circmnstances it often does seem to ns other- 
wise. And again, what majestic calm, what self-restraint of Hnman 
aflfections and sublime consciousness of Divine Power in this dehy: 
it is Christ once more asleep, while the disciples are despairing, in 
the bark almost swamped in the storm! Christ is never in haste: 
least of all, on His errands of love. And He is never in haste^ 
because He is always sure. 

It was only after these two days that Christ broke silence as to 
His purposes and as to Lazarus. Though thoughts of him muA 
have been present with the disciples, none dared ask aught, althongli 
not from misgiving, nor yet from fear. This also of fiedth and of 
confidence. At last, when His work in that part had been completed, 
He spoke of leaving, but even so not of going to Bethany, but into 
Judaea. For, in truth. His work in Bethany was not only geographi* 
cally, but really, part of His work in Judsea; and He told the 
disciples of His purpose, just because He knew their fears and would 
teach them, not only for this but for every future occasion, what prin- 
ciple applied to them. For when, in their care and affection, they 
reminded the ' Rabbi ' — and the expression here almost jars on ns— 
that the Jews * were even now seeking to stone ' Him, He replied by 
telling them, in figurative language, that we have each our working 
day from God, and that while it lasts no foe can shorten it or 
break up our work. The day had twelve hours, and while these 
lasted no mishap would befall him that walked in the way [he stumbleth 
not, because he seeth the light of this world]. It was otherwise when 
the day was j^ast and the night had come. When our God-given 
day has set, and with it the light been withdrawn which hitherto 
prevented our stumbling — then, if a man went in his own way and 
at his own time, might such mishap befall him, * because,' figuit* 
tively as to light in the night-time, and really as to guidance and 
direction in the way, ' the light is not in him.' 

But this was only part of what Jesus said to His disciples ia 
preparation for a journey that would issue in such tremendous cott* 
sequences. He next spoke of Lazarus, their * friend,' as *fallcT^ 
asleei)' — in the frequent Jewish (as well as Christian) figurative 
sense of it,* and of His going there to wake him out of sleep. 1^* 
disciples would naturally connect this mention of His going ^^ 


* As to the Jewish vsus of the expression * sleep ' for death, see Book IIL chap, r^^'^ 


Lazaros with His proposed visit to Judeea, and, in their eagerness to chap. 
keep Him from the latter, interposed that there could be no need for xxi 
going to Lazams, since sleep was, according to Jewish notions, one of 
the six,' or, according to others,*" five symptoms or crises in recovery *3>er.n7 6 
from dangerous illness. And when the Lord then plainly stated it, '' ^' "* 
* Lazarus died,' adding, what should have aroused their attention, 
that for their sakes He was glad He had not been in Bethany 
before the event, because now that would come which would work 
faith in them, and proposed to go to the dead Lazarus — even then, 
their whole attention was so absorbed by the certainty of danger to 
their cherished Teacher, that Thomas had only one thought : since 
it was to be so, let them go and die with Jesus. So little had 
they understood the figurative language about the twelve hours on 
which God's sun shone to light us on our way ; so much did they 
need the lesson of faith to be taught iu the raising of Lazarus ! 

We aheady know the quiet happy home of Bethany.' ^Vhen 
Jesus reached it, ' He found ' — probably from those who met Him by 
the way'* — that Lazarus had been already four days in the grave. V'S^^";^ 
AccorcUng to custom, he would be buried the same day that he had 
died.*' Supposing his death to have taken place when the message ■■ m»ii k. 
for help was first delivered, while Jesus continued after that two 
whole days in the place where He was, this would leave about a day 
for His journey from Penea to Bethany. We do not, indeed, know 
the exact place of His stay ; but it must have been some well-known 
centre in Penea, since the sisters of Bethiiny had no difficulty in send- 
ing their messenger. At the same time we infer that, at least at this 
period, some kind of intercourse must have been carried on between 
Christ and His more intimate disciples and friends — such as the 
fcmily of Bethany — by which they were kept informed of the general 
plan of His Mission-journeys, and of any central station of His tem- 
porary sojourn. If Christ at that time occupied such a central station, 
»e can the more readily understand how some of His Galilean dis- 
Qples may, for a brief space, have been absent at their Galilean 
fioiQes when the tidings about Lazarus arrived. Their absence may 
**plaio the prominent position which Thomas occupied ; perhaps, 
"^o, in part, the omission of this narrative from the Synoptic Gospels. 
^^e more point may be of interest. Supposing the journey to 
**ethany to have occupied a day, we would suggest the following 

**«« anoUm Initonce of Hia self-e: 





«> 2 Kings 
xxUi. 6; 
Jer. xxvu 23 

« St. Mfttt. 
xxvii 7; 
Actfl L 19 

«» Sonh. vi. 5 

* Targ. on 
Ps. cxv. 17 


computation. The messenger of the Sisters left Bethany on the 
Sunday (it could not have been on the Sabbath), and reached Jesus 
on the Monday. Christ continued in Peraea other two days, till 
Wednesday, and arrived at Bethany on Thursday. On Friday the 
meeting of the Sanhedrists against Clirist took place, while He 
rested in Bethany on the Friday, and, of course, on the Sabbath, 
and returned to Peraea and ' Ephraim ' on the Sunday. 

This may be a convenient jJace for adding such particulars to 
the account already given, ^ in connection with the burying of the 
widow's son at Nain, of the Jewish observances and rites,* as may 
further illustrate the present history. Keferring to the previous de- 
scription, we resiune, in imagination, our attendance at the point 
where Christ met the bier and again gave life to the dead. But we 
remember that, as we are now in Judaea, the hired mourners — ^both 
mourning-men (for there were such) and mourning-women — would 
follow, not, as in Galilee, precede, the body.' From the nanati?e 
we infer that the burial of Lazarus did not take place in a oommon 
burying-ground, wliich was never nearer a town than 50 cuWts,' 
dry and rocky places being chosen in preference. Here the gniYes 
must be at least a foot and a half apart. It was deemed a dishonour 
to the dead to stand on, or walk over, the turf of a grave. Roses 
and other flowers seem to have been planted on graves.* But ceme- 
teries, or common burying-places, appear in earliest times to have 
been used only for the poor,^ or for strangers.*^ In Jerusalem there 
were also two places where executed criminals were buried.* All 
these, it is needless to say, were outside the City. But there i^ 
abundant evidence, that every place had not its own burying-ground; 
and that, not unfrequently, provision had to be made for the tians^ 
port of bodies.^ Indeed, a burying-place is not mentioned among the 
ten requisites for every fully-organised Jewish community.^ The 
names given, both to the graves and to the burying-place, are of inter- 
est. As regards the former, we mention such as ' the house of silence;* * 
' the house of stone ; ' ^ ' the hostelry,' or, literally, * place where jotx 
spend the night;' *the couch;' *the resting-place;' Hhe valley of th^ 

* When relating the history of the 
raising of the widow's son at Nain, Book 
III. chap. XX. 

' An interesting account (to which I 
would acknowledge obligations) is given 
in a brochure by Dr. Perlett^ reprinted 
from PrankeVi Monatsschrift. 

* Shabb. 153 a ; comp. also as regards 
Jerusalem (where the Galilean custom 

prevailed), Semach. ill. 6. 

* Comp. Perles, u. s. p. 25. . ^ 
» Children under a month were bnri©** 

without the ceremonial of moumiBg* , 

• These were : a law court, prori*^ 
for the poor, a synagogue, a public bit*** 
a secesrifs^ a doctor, a sorgeon, a scribe 
a butcher, and a schoolmaster. 


mnliitude,' or ' of the dead.' The cemetery was called ' the house of chap. 
grsves ; " or ' the court of burying ; ' and ' the house of eternity.' xxi 
By a euphemism, * to die ' vas designated as ' going to rest ; ' ' being • Bnib. lu. i; 
completed ; ' ' being gathered to the world ' or ' the home of light ; ' 
* being withdrawn,' or 'hidden.' Burial without coffin seems to have 
c<mtinued the practice for a considerable time, and rules are given 
how a pit, the size of the body, was to be dug, and surrounded by a 
mil of loose stones to prevent the falling in of earth. When after- 
wards earth-burials had to be vindicated against the Parsee idea of 
cremation, Jewish divines more fully discussed the question of burial, 
and described the committal of the body to the ground as a sort of 
ezpiataoD.'' It was a curious later pntctice, that children who had "smii-w* 
died a few days after birth were circumcised on their graves. Chil- 
dren not a month old were buried without coffin or mourning, and, 
aa some have thought, in a special place." In connection with a •cumilida 
recent oontroverey it is interesting to learn that, for the sake of 
peace, just as the poor and sick of the Gentiles might be fed and 
nursed along with those of the Jews, so the Gentile dead might be 
buried by the side of Israelites.^ On the other hand, a wicked per- a out. eta 
Bon should not be boned close to a sage." Suicidee were not accorded - sanb. <i a 
alt the honours of those who had died a natural death, and the bodies 
of executed criminals were laid in a special place, whence the rela- 
tives might after a time remove their bones.' The burial terminated < a. ». 4« o 
ly casting earth on the grave.* ■ uw. s a 

But, as already stated, Lazarus was, as became his station, not 
Uid in a cemetery, but in his own private tomb in a cave — probably 
in a garden, the favourite place of interment. Though on terms of 
eloK friendship with Jesus, he was evidently not regarded as an 
apostate from the Synagogue. For, every indignity was shown at the 
'"'rial of an apostate ; people were even to array themselves in white 
festiTe garments to make demonstration of joy.** Here, on the con- " somiciu j 
^fMyias we gather from the sequel, every mark of sympathy, respect, 
"nd sorrow had been shown by the people in the district and by 
"finds in the neighbouring Jerusalem. In such case it would be 
'*gMded as a privilege to obey the Rabbinic direction of accompanying 
"^ dead, so as to show honour to the departed and kindness to the 
"Trivors. As the sisters of Bethany were ' disciples,' we may well 
^lieve that some of the more extravagant demonstrations of grief 
**!*, if not dispensed with, yet modified. We can scarcely believe, 
''wt the hired ' mourners ' would alternate between extravagant praises 
of tile dead and calls npon the attendants to lament;' or that, as was ■scmuti.Lt 





S7 6 

« u. B. 28 6 

« Jer. Moed 

100 6 


263 a 

•« BnbaB. 
100 6 

»» Ber. 53 a 
' Bez. 6 a 

«( Meg. 26 6 

"» Mearta^ 
BabH !Nrez. 
H5 6; Baba 
ii. 58 m 

their wont, they would strike on their breast, beat their hands, and 
dash about their feet,* or break into wails and mourning songs, alone 
or in chorus.^ In all probability, however, the funeral oration woold 
be delivered — as in the case of all distinguished persons *— either in 
the house,^ or at one of the stations where the bearers changed, or 
at the burying-place ; perhaps, if they passed it, in the Synagogne.* 
It has previously been noted, what extravagant value was, in lat«r 
times, attached to these orations, as indicating both a man's life on 
earth and his place in heaven/ The dead was supposed to be j»e- 
sent, listening to the words of the speaker and watching the expres- 
sion on the feu^es of the hearers. It would serve no good purpose to 
reproduce fragments from these orations. Their character is suffi- 
ciently indicated by the above remarks.^ 

When thinking of these tombs in gardens,* we so naturally revert 
to that which for three days held the Lord of Life, that all details 
become deeply interesting. And it is, perhaps, better to give them 
here rather than afterwards to interrupt, by such inquiries, our solemn 
thoughts in presence of the Crucified Christ. Not only the rich, hot 
even those moderately well-to-do, had tombs of their own, which 
probably were acquired and prepared long before they were needed, 
and treated and inherited as private and personal property.' In 
such caves, or rock-hewn tombs, the bodies were laid, having been 
anointed with many spices,** with myrtle,* aloes, and, at a later period, 
also with hyssop, rose-oil, and rose-water. The body was dressed 
and, at a later period, wrapped, if possible, in the worn cloths in 
which originally a Roll of the Law had been held.^ The ' tombs' 
were either 'rock-hewn,' or natural 'caves,'™ or else large walled 
vaults, with niches along the sides. Such a ' cave ' or * vault ' of 4 
cubits' (6 feet) width, 6 cubits' (9 feet) length, and 4 cubits' (6 feet) 
height, contained 'niches' for eight bodies — three on each of the 
longitudinal sides, and two at the end o])posite the entrance. Ead 
'niche' was 4 cubits (6 feet) long, and had a height of seven and 
a width of six handbreadths. As these burying ' niches ' were hoi* 
lowed out in the walls, they were called Ghnchin (pronounce 'ioo* 
cJdn^^ not ' Kokivi,* as in the Reports of the Palestine Exploration 
Fund). The larger caves or vaults were 6 cubits (9 feet) wide,alii 
8 cubits (12 feet) long, and held thirteen bodies — four along esC^ 

* I must here refer the learned reader 
for much curiouB and interesting infor- 
mation to the labours of Zunz, See here 
especiaUy Zur Gesch. n. Liter, pp. 304 to 


* Nieolai (De Sepulchr. Hebr., a 
of no great value) gives a pictorial ill 
trationat p. 170. 


three opposite to, and one on either aide of the entrance.* chap. 
res apply, of couree, only to what the Law required, when xxi 
d been contracted for. When a person constructed one • Bat* b. t1. 
f, the dimensions of the walls and the number of Chvy- 
it, of course, vary. At the entrance to the vault waa ' a 
:ubit8 (9 feet) square, to hold the bier and its bearers, 
i two ' caves ' opened on this ' court.' But it is difficult 
whether the second ' cave,' Bpoken of, was intended as an 
faarium). Certain it ia, that after a time the bones were 
and put into a box or coffin, having first been anointed 
and oil, and being held together by wrappings of cloths.'' ^-^l jV"^ 
instance explains the existence of the mortuary chests, or 
':, 80 frequently found in the tombs of Palestine by late 
who have been unable to explain their meaning.^ This 
is ' is much to be regretted, when we read, for example, of 
best ' as found in a cave near Bethany.* One of the ex- yj*""^ 
as discovered on them fragments of Hebrew inscriptions, i^nvp.*** 
be of great importance exactly to ascertain this, and the 
th tombs. For, at present, no Hebrew inscription is known 
Ider than the year 1083 of our era.'' There are, indeed, 
riptions found on Jewish tombs out of Palestine (iu Rome, 
places), written in bad Greek or Latin, containing, perhaps, 
word, and generally ending with Bhaiom, ' peace,' and 
ith Jewish symbols, such aa the Seven -branched Candle- 
Ark, the festive emblems of the Feast of Tabernacles, and 
)a the other hand, the advice not to read such inscriptions,'^ ^» 
d affect the sight, seems to imply the existence of much 
■iptions in Hebrew. They appear to have been graven either 
of themortuarychesf, or on the Goici, or great stone 'rolled' 
.ranee to the vault, or to the ' court ' leading into it, or else 
dde walla of yet another erection, made over the vaults of 
ly, and which was su|tposed to complete the burying-place, 

iMly deiKMiils whctlier, with in the (hinl Quart. Stat. (1869), pp.66, 

Perlet (p. UB), we regard ^c. 

Ml ouariHBi.oT, with Levg, re- ' M. ClfriuoHt-flenneaii, 

■ KtSUD'a. 'honscof monni- * At Worms. The supposed andant 

b (comp. Sehitah oA loc). (pre-Christiiin. Tsraclitish) insciiptioos in 

Betters, (a) by Dr. Cha]ilin, tlie Crimea are now geDerally ascribed to 

Oct. 1673, p.'] 66; (ft) by M. a much later date. 

a(!ijm«,Ap. 1874, pp. 96, &c. ; * See AAiirer, Gemeinde Yerf. d. Jnden 

alia. Quart. Ktat. Jan. 1676, p. id Rom. Schiirer hns collect^ forty-tive 

, by Lieut. Condtr, ib. pp. 18, of the most interesting of titcso inscrip- 

)ecially, Capt. Wilmn'f Report 






xlU. 37-39 

* Ant xyi. 

« Srnb. V. 1 ; 
Shek. U. 5 


• St lUtt. 



' Moe.1 K. 
29 a 

« Baba B. 
100 6 

These small buildings surmounting the graves may have serred 
as shelter to those who visited the tombs. They also served as 
* monuments,' ^ of which we read in the Bible, in the Apocrypha,* 
and in Josephus,^ ^ In Rabbinic writings they are frequently men- 
tioned, chiefly by the name of Nepheahj * soul,' for * house of the 
soul,' ^ or, by the more Scriptural name of baniah^ or, by the Greco- 
Aramaic,* or the Hebrew designation for a building generally. But 
of gravestones with inscriptions we do not read in Talmudic w<nrks, 
nor do we believe such to have existed. At the same time, the plare 
where there was a vault or a grave was marked by a stone, which 
was kept whitened,^ to warn the passer-by against defilement.* 

We are now able fully to realise all the circumstances and siu^ 
roundings in the burial and raising of Lazarus. 

Jesus had come to Bethany. But in the house of mourning they 
knew it not. As Bethany was only about fifteen furlongs — or abont 
two miles — firom Jerusalem, many fi-om the City, who were on tenw 
of fiiendship with what was evidently a distinguished &mily, had 
come in obedience to one of the most binding Babbinic directions— 
that of comforting the mourners. In the funeral procession the 
sexes had been separated, and the practice probably prevailed even at 
that time for the women to return alone from the grave. This niay 
explain why afterwards the women went and returned alone to the 
Tomb of our Lord. The mourning, which began before the burial,* 
had been shared by the friends wlio sat silent on the ground, or irere 
busy preparing the mourning meal. As the company left the grave, 
each had taken leave of the dead with a * Dejmrt in peace ! ' ^ Then 
they had formed into lines, through which the mourners passed 
amidst expressions of sympathy, repeated (at least seven times) a* 
the procession halted on the return to the house of mourning.' Then 
began the mourning in the house, which really lasted thirty days, of 
which the first three were those of greatest, the others, during tke 
seven days, or the special week of sorrow, of less intense mourning* 
But on the Sabbath, as God's holy day, all mourning was intermitted-^ 
and so * they rested on the Sabbath, according to the commandment. 

In that household of disciples this mourning would not hav« 

* On account of the poverty of some of 
the sages, it was declared that they needed 
not monuments; their deeds were their 
monuments (Shekal. ii. 7). 

' The first gives an exaggerated account 
of the great monument erected by Simon 
Maccal>ea8 in honour of his father and 
brothers ; the second refers to a monument 

erected by Herod over the tomb of ^^ , 

» Ezek. xliii. 7. TVobably the seoo^. 

clause of Is. liii. 9 should thus re»^'' 

* And \\'ith the rich His sepulchre.' 

* Dion- . , t 

* On the subject of 'moaming . 
must refer generally to the cbapli^ 

* Sketches of Jewish Social Life.* 


Dined soch violent forma, as when we read that the women were chap. 
the habit of tearing out their hair," or of a Rabbi who publicly xxi 
nrged himself.'' But we know how the dead would be spoken •jm. Kiai' 

In death the two worlds were eaid to meet and kiBa." And ^*j^j ^ 
jff they who had passed away beheld God.^ They were at rest. niU'-*'' 
ch beautiful passageB ag Pe. cxii. 6, Prov. z, 7,* Is.xi. 10, last clause, \^taiDi.4d 
i Is. Ivii. 2,' were applied to them. Nay, the holy dead should be 'J^'^^^ 
led * Mving.' In truth, they knew about us, and unseen still but- • bit. b. m 
inded us.< Nor should they eyer be mentioned without adding a [f^f'^ 
^ssing on their memory.'' ■ Ber. is*. 

In thiB Bpirit, we cwmot doubt, the Jews were now 'comforting' "Yommw*- 
i sisters. They may have repeated words such as those quoted as tmi. sb ■ 
; conclusion of such a consolatoiy speech:' ' May the Lord of con- 'Chetiinb. 
aiions (niDM] Wa) comfort you ! Blessed be He \\'ho comforteth 
5 mourners ! ' But they could scarcely have imagined how literally 
vish like this was' about to be fulfilled. For, already, the message 
d reached Martha, who was probably in one of the outer apari- 
tnts of the house: Jesus is coming I She hastened to meet the 
uter. Not a word of complaint, not a murmur, nor doubt, escaped 
r lips — only what during those four bitter days these two sisters 
d 8o often been saying to each other, when the luxury of solitude 
Ls allowed them, that if He had been there, their brother would not 
ive died. And, even now — when it was all too late — when tliey had 
A received what they had asked of Him by their messenger, it must 
ave been, because He had not asked it, though He had said that 
lis sickness was not unto death ; or else because He had delayed to 
'ork it till He would come. And still she held fast by it, that even 
low God would give Him whatsoever He asked. Or, did they mean 
wre: were they such words of unconscious prophecy, or sight and 
wmd of heavenly things, as sometimes come to us in our passion 
■f grief, or else winged thoughts of faith too soon beyond our vision ? 
iiey could not have been the expression of any real hope of the 
'"acle about to take place, or Martha would not have afterwards 
''ight to arrest Him, when He bade them roll away the stone. And 
-t is it not even so, that, when that comes to us which our faith had 
•Ce dared to suggest, if not to hope, we feel as if it were all too 
«at and impossible — that a very physical ' cannot be ' separates us 

It was in very truth and literality that the Lord meant it, when 
' told Martha her brother would rise again, although she under- 
•od His Words of the Resurrection at the last Day. In answer. 
Vol. u. y 


Christ pointed out to her the connection between Himself and tlie 
Resurrection ; and, what He spoke, that He did when He raised 
" I.Azam3 from the dead. The Resurrection and the Life are not 
special gifts either to the Church or to humanity, but are connected 
with the Christ — the outcome of Himself. The ReBurrection of Uk 
Just and the General Resurrection are the consequence of the rela- 
tion in which the Church and hnmanity in general iitand to tiw 
Christ. Without the Christ there would have been no Resurrediot. 
Most literally He ie the Resurrection and the Life — and this, the 
new teaching abont the Resurrection, was the object and the meas- 
ing of the raising of Lazarus. And thus is this raising of lAnnii 
the outlook, also, upon His own Resurrection, Who is 'the first-^mtf 
from the dead.' 

And though the special, then present, application, or ratto 
manifestation of it, would be in the raising of Lazams — ^yet thii 
teaching, that accompanied it, is to *all believers:' *He that bfr 
lieveth in Ale, even if [though] he die, shall live; and whoaoew 
liveth and believeth in Me shall not die for ever ' ' (tmto the .Soo^ 
where possibly we might, for commentation, mentally insert tie 
sign of a pause ( — ) between the words ' die ' and ' for ever,' or * unto 
the i??on.' It is only when we think of the meaning of ChriBCi 
previous words, ns implying that the Resurrection and the LifeiR 
the outcome of Himself, and come to us only through Him and ii 
Him, that we c:m understand the answer of Martha to His qnestion: 
' Believest thou this ? Yea, Lord, I have believed that Thou art the 
Christ, the Son of God [with special reference to the original mess^e 
of Christ '], He that cometh into the world [' the Coming One into 
the world '=the world's promised, expected, come Saviour]. 

What more passed we can only gather bom the contest. It seeW 
that the ilaster ' called ' for Mary. This message Martha now hasted 
to deliver, although ' secretly.' Mary was sitting probably in tk 
chamber of mourning, with its upset chairs and couches, and other 
meliincholy tokens of mourning, as was the custom, surrounded bf 
many who had come to comfort them ; herself, we can scarcely docdit, 
silent, her thoughts far away in that world to, and of which the 
Master was to her ' the Way, the Truth, and the Life.' As she horf 
of His coming and call, she rose 'quickly,' and the Jews fWIoi«rf 
her, under the impression that she was again going to visit, asdtA 

■ This is not onlft.he lit cml rendering, the apiritual nor the eternal, but Hhk 

bnt the paralleliam of ihe preyioos opposition to physical death— MM* " 

uembeT of the lentence (' even if h(> die, demand thia, rather thui the icndoitf 

Bball live ')— where the ' life ' is neither of both the A. Y. and the B. V. 


eep at the tomb of her brother. For, it was the practice to visit chap. 
le grave, especially diiring the first three days.' When she came xxi 
> Jesos, where He still stood, onteide Bethany, she was forgetfal of ^SBnuich-B 
II around. It was, as if sight of Him melted what had &ozen the '''"^ " " 
ide of her feelings. She could only fall at His Feet, and repeat 
he poor words with which she and her sister had these four weary 
ays tried to cover the nakedness of their sorrow: poor words of 
onsolation, and poor wca^ls of faith, which she did not, like her 
E8t«r, make still poorer by adding the poverty of her hope to that 
f her &ith — the poverty of the future to that of the past and 
resent. To Martha that had been the maximum, to Mary it was 
he minvmuTn of her laith ; for the rest, it was far, far better to add 
othing more, but simply to worship at His Feet. 

It most have been a deeply touching scene : the outpouring of 
ler sorrow, the absoluteness of her faith, the mute appeal of her 
ears. And the Jews who witnessed it were moved as she, and 
vept with her. What follows is difficult to understand ; still more 
lifficnlt to explain : not only from the choice of language, which is 
>ecaliarly difficult, but because its difficulty springs from the yet 
greater difficulty of expressing what it is intended to describe. The 
expression, 'groaned in spirit,' cannot mean that Christ ' was moved 
with indignation in the spirit,' since this could not have been 
the consequence of witnessing the tears of Mary and what, we feel 
sure, was the genuine emotion of the Jews. Of the various interpre- 
tations,' that commends itself most to us, which would render the 
npreesion : ' He vehemently moved His Spirit and troubled Him- 
wlf.' One, whose insight into such questions is peculiarly deep, has 
feminded us ' that ' the miracles of the Lord were not wrought by 
tile dmple word of power, but that in a mysterious way the element 
rf apathy entered into them. He took away the sufferings and 
'^ueases of men in some sense by taking them upon Himself.' If, 
^h this most just view of His Condescension to, and union with, 
■iviQuDity as its Healer, by taking upon Himself its diseases, we 
*™nbiDe the statement formerly made about the Resurrection, as not 
' gift or boon but the outcome of Himself — we may, in some way, 
"ot nnderstand, but be able to gaze into, the unfathomed depth 
"f that Theanthropic fellow-suffering which was both vicarioos 
•"d redemptive, and which, before He became the Resurrection 

' ^or ■ brief but excellent smnmary of the principal views on the subject, see Wett- 
**. »A inc. 

CuoQ tfartOPtt. 


to Lozama, shook His whole inner Being, when, in the words of 
St. John, * He vehemently moved Hia Spirit and troubled Him- 
" self.' 

And now every trait is in accord. ' ^Tiere have ye laid him?' 
So truly human — as if He, Who was about to raise the dead, needed 
the information where he had been laid ; ao truly human, aim, in 
the underlying tenderness of the personal address, and in the jJ> 
sorption of the whole Theanthropic energy on the mighty bnrdea 
about to be lifted and lifted away. So, al»o, as they bade Him cmx 
and see, were the tears that fell from Him {iidKpwrm\ not like tbe 
violent lamentation {SKkavaev) that burst &om Him at sight anl 
prophetic view of doomed Jerusalem.' Yet we can Bcarcely think 
that the Jews rightly interpreted it, when they ascribed it only to 
His love for Lazarus. But surely there was not a touch either of 
malevolence or of irony, only what we feel to be quite natural in tbe 
circumstances, when some of them asked it alond : ' Could not thii 
One, Which opened the eyes of the blind, have wrought so that ^ 
order] this one also should not die ? ' Scarcely was it even unbelik 
They had so lately witnessed in Jerusalem that Miracle, such as had 
' not been heard ' ' since the world began,' " that it seemed ditGcah 
to understand how, seeing there was the will (in His affection fcr 
Lazarus), there was not the i>ower — not to raise him from the dead, 
for that did not occur to them, but to prevent his dying. Was then, 
then, a barrier in death? And it was this, and not indignatian, 
which once more caused that Theanthropic recurrence upon HiDueI( 
when agnin ' He vehemently moved His Spirit,' 

And now they were at the cave which was his tomb. He We 
them roll aside the great stone which covered its entrance.' Amidst 
the awful pause which preceded obedience, one voice only was raiwd. 
It was that of Martha. Jeaus had not spoken of raising Lazarus, Bot 
what was aboiit \a be done ? She could scarcely have thought th»t 
He merely wished to gaze once more upon the face of the dead. 
Something nameless had seized her. She dared not believe; «he 
dared not disbelieve. Did she, perhaps, not dread a feilure, but fed 
misgivings, when thinking of Christ as in presence of commencing 
oormption before these Jews — and yet, as we so often, still love Him 
even in unbelief? It was the common Jewish idea that c«n^ 
tion commenced on the fourth day, that the drop of gall, whicb 
had fallen from the sword of the Angel and caused death, was thai 
working its effect, and that, as the face changed, the soul ioA >" 

e vhtsti a» dead wm iiii,**^ 



final leave from the resting-place of the body.* Only one sentence chap. 
Jesus spake of gentle reproof, of reminder of what He had said to xxi 
her just before, and of the message He had sent when first He heard • Tebam. 
of Lazarus' illness,^ but, oh, so full of calm maiesty and consciousness r, loo; 

Vaiilk. B 18 

of Divine strength. And now the stone was rolled away. We all feel b gt. john 
that the fitting thing here was prayer — yet not petition, but thanks- ^'^ 
giving that the Pather * heard ' Him, not as regarded the raising of 
Lazams, which was His Own Work, but in the ordering and arranging 
of all the circumstances — alike the petition and the thanksgiving 
having for their object them that stood by, for He knew that the 
Father always heard Him: that so they might believe, that the 
Father had sent Him. Sent of the Father — not come of Himself, 
not sent of Satan — and sent to do His Will ! 

And in doing this Will, He was the Resurrection and the Life, 

One loud command spoken into that silence ; one loud call to that 

sleeper; one flash of God's Own Light into that darkness, and again 

moved the wheels of Ufe at the outgoing of The Life. And, still 

bonnd hand and foot with graveclothes [^ bands,' Tdchrichin']^ and his 

&ce with the napkin, Lazarus stood forth, shuddering and silent, in 

the cold light of earth's day. In that multitude, now more pale and 

shuddering than the man bound in the graveclothes, the Only One 

majestically calm was He, Who before had been so deeply moved and 

troubled Himself, as He now bade them * Loose him, and let him go.' 

We know no more. Holy Writ in this also proves its Divine 

authorship and the reality of what is here recorded. The momentarily 

lifted veil has again fallen over the darkness of the Most Holy Place, 

in which is only the Ark of His Presence and the cloudy incense of 

our worship. What happened afterwards — how they loosed him, 

^hat they said, what thanks, or praise, or worship, the sisters spoke, 

«nd what were Lazarus' first words, we know not. And better so. 

Kd Lazarus remember aught of the late past, or was not rather the 

'ending of the grave a real rending from the past : the awakening so 

•Qdden, the transition so great, that nothing of the bright vision 

remained, but its impress — just as a marvellously beautiful Jewish 

wgend has it, that before entering this world, the soul of a child has 

*^ aJl of heaven and hell, of past, present, and future ; but that, 

** the Angel strikes it on the mouth to waken it into this world, all 

^the other has passed from the mind? Again we say: We know 

^ot— and it is better so. 

And here abruptly breaks oflf this narrative. Some of those who 
^ seen it believed on Him ; others hurried back to Jerusalem to 
^H it the Pharisees. Then was hastily gathered a meeting of the 


BOOK Sanhedrists,' not to judge Him, but to deliberate what was to be done. 

IV That He was really doing these miracles, there could be no question 

' ' ' among them. Similarly, all but one or two had no doubt as to the 

source of these miracles. If real,^ they were of Satanic agency — and 

all the more tremendous they were, the more certainly so. But 

whether really of Satanic power, or merely a Satanic delusion, one 

thing, at least, was evident, that, if He were let alone, all men would 

believe on Him. And then, if He headed the Messianic movement 

of the Jews as a nation, alike the Jewish City and Temple, and Israel 

as a nation, would perish in the fight with Kome. But what vas 

to be done ? They had not the courage of, though the wish for, 

judicial murder, till he who was the High-Priest, Caiaphas, reminded 

them of the well-known Jewish adage, that it * is better one min 

» Ber. E. M ; should die, than the community perish.' ' Yet, even so, be who spAe 

91, and the was the High-Pricst ; and for the last time, ere in speaking the 

eccl'ix. 18 sentence he spoke it for ever as against himself and the ofiBce he 

held, spake through him God's Voice, not as regards the counsel of 

murder, but this, that His Death should be * for that nation '— naji 

as St. John adds, not only for Israel, but to gather into one fold ill 

the now scattered children of God. 

This was the last prophecy in Israel ; with the sentence of death 
on Israel's true High-Priest died prophecy in Israel, died Israers 
High-Priesthood. It had spoken sentence upon itself. 

This was the first Friday of dark resolve. Henceforth it onlj 
needed to concert plans for carrying it out. Some one, perhaps 
Nicodemus, sent word of the secret meeting and resolution of the 
Sanhedrists. That Friday and the next Sabbath Jesus rested in 
Bethany, with the same majestic calm which He had shown at the 
grave of Lazarus. Then He withdrew, far away to the obscure 
bounds of Peraea and Galilee, to a city of which the very location is 
now imknown.^ And there He continued with His disciples, with- 
drawn from the Jews — till He would make His final entrance into 

» On the Sanhedrin, see further in " The *city' 'called J^*^^»**J^ 

Book v. not been localised. Most modem wrfteif* 

* The doubt as to their reality would, identify it with the Ephiaim, or ^Jj**; 

of course, come from the Sadducees in of 2 Chron. xiii. 19, in the neighboiirii>*» 

the Sanhedrin. It will be remembered, of Bethel, and near the wildenw* j^ 

that both Caiaphas and the Chief Priests Bethaven. But the text seems to reqaa* 

belonged to that party. a place in Penea and close to QalUw- 






(St. Uatt. zix. 1, 2 ; St. Haik x. I ; St. Lnke xvii. II ; St. Luke xvii. 13-19; St. Matt. 
xix.3-12; St. Markx. 2-12; St. Matt. xix. 13-15; St. Mark x. 13-16; St. Luke 
xriiL IS-ir.) 

The brief time of rest and quiet converse with His disciples in the chap. 
retirement of Ephraim was past, and the Saviour of men prepared for xxii 
His last journey to Jerusalem. All the three Synoptic Gospels mark " ' ' 
this, although with varying details." From the mention of Galilee 'Btitiitt. 
by St. Matthew, and by St. Luke of Samaria and Gahlee — or more st ii«k'(. 
correctly, ' between (along the frontiers of) Samaria and Galilee,' we nu. ii 
may conjecture that, on leaving Ephraim, Christ made a very brief 
detour along the northern frontier to some place at the southern 
bwder of Galilee — perhaps to meet at a certain point those who 
were to accompany Him on His final journey to JeruBalem. This 
suggestion, for it is no more, is in itself not improbable, Rince some 
rf Christ's immediate followers might naturally wish to pay a brief 
Tint to their friends in Galilee before going up to Jerusalem. And 
it is farther confirmed by the notice of St. Mark,*" that among those 'slmstIi 
who had followed Christ there were ' many women which came up " ' ' 
vith Him unto Jerusalem.* For, we can scarcely suppose that these 
•many women' had gone with Him in the previous autumn from 
(HlDee to the Feast of Tabernacles, nor that they were with Him at 
Qie Feagt of the Dedication, or had during the winter followed Him 
thmogh Penea, nor yet that they had been at Bethany,' All these 
difficulties are obviated if, as suggested, we suppose that Christ had 
fueA from Ephraim along the border of Samaria to a place in 
""Iflee, there to meet such of His disciples as would go up with 

' Jxleed, any lengtheoed joomeriug, Not so, of course, tha tmveUing in tha 
?™'w m indefinita pmpoK, would have festive band up to the Paachal Feast. 
^^ quite ocmtnty to Jewisb maunen. 




• St. Mat- 

^ St. Mark 

« St. Luke 
xvii. 12-ll> 

* VY. 20-87 

• St. Matt, 
viil. 2-4 ; 
St. Mark i. 

' St. Luke 
xvli. 2i»-37 

f St. Matt. 
xxlv.; St. 
Murk xiii. 

Him to Jerusalem. The whole company would then form ottt rf 
those festive bands which travelled up to the Paschal Feast, nor 
would there be anything strange or unusual in the appearance of sndi 
a band, in this instance under the leadership of Jesus. 

Another and deeply important notice, furnished by SS. Mattheir 
and Mark, is, that during this journey through Penea, * great multi- 
tudes ' resorted to, and followed Him, and that * He healed * ' and 
* taught them.' ^ This will account for the incidents and Discouises by 
the way, and also how, from among many deeds, the Evangelists may 
have selected for record what to them seemed the most important «r 
novel, or else best accorded with the plans of their respective narratives.' 

Thus, to begin with, St. Luke alone relates the very first incident 
by the way,*^ and the first Discourse.^ Nor is it difficult to nnder- 
stand the reason. To one who, like St. Matthew, had followed Chiist 
in His Galilean Ministry, or, like St. Mark, had been the penman 
of St. Peter, there would be nothing so peculiar or novel in the 
healing of lepers as to introduce this on the overcrowded canvas of 
the last days. Indeed, they had both already recorded what may be 
designated as a typical healing of lepers.® But St. Luke had not 
recorded such healing before ; and the restoration of ten at the same 
time would seem to the ' beloved physician ' matter, not only new in 
his narrative, but of the deepest importance. Besides, we have 
already seen, that the record of the whole of this East-Jordan 
]\Iinistry is peculiar to St. Luke ; and we can scarcely doubt, that it 
was the result of personal inquiries made by the Evangelist on the 
six)t, in order to supplement what might have seemed to him a gap 
in the Gospels of St. Matthew and St. Mark. This would explain 
his fulness of detail as regards incidents, and, for example, the in- 
troduction of the history of Zacchgeus, which to St. Mark, or rather 
to St. Peter, but especially to St. Matthew (himself once a publican)^ 
might appear so like that which they had so often witnessed and le- 
lated, as scarcely to require special narration. On the same ground 
we account for the record by St. Luke of Christ's Discourse predic* 
tive of the Advent of the Messianic Kingdom.*" This Discourse i* 
evidently in its place at the beginning of Christ's last journey to 
Jerusalem. But the other two Evangelists merge it in the account 
of the fuller teaching on the same subject during the last days of 
Christ's sojourn on earth.^ 

It is a further confirmation of our suggestion as to the road taken 

' Tliis will more fully appear when we study the history of Zaochscus and the c^ 
of the blind man in Jericho. 


J, that of the ten lepers whom, at the outset of His journey, chap. 
when entering into a village, one was a Samaritan. It may xxn 
3n that the district was infested with leprosy ; or these lepers ^ " ' 
tidings of Christ's approach, have hastily gathered there. It 
fully explained in another place,* in strict accordance with 
^w, that these lepers remained both outside the village and 
. Him to \\Tiom they now cried for mercy. And, without 
)uch or even command of healing, Christ bade them go and 
smselves as healed to the priests. For this it was, as will be 
ered, not necessary to repair to Jerusalem. Any priest might 
' unclean ' or * clean,' provided the applicants presented them- 
ngly, and not in company,* for his inspection.' And they 'Neg-iin 
IJhrist's bidding, even before they had actually experienced the 
So great was their faith, and, may we not almost infer, the 
belief throughout the district, in the Power of * the Master.* 
they went, the new life coursed in their veins. Restored 
)egan to be felt, just as it ever is, not before, nor yet after 
y, but in the act of obedience of a faith that has not yet 
ced the blessing. 

now appeared the characteristic difference between these 
)f these ten, equally recipients of the benefit, the nine Jews 
d their way — presumably to the priests — while the one 
m in the number at once turned back, with a loud voice 
g God. The whole event may not have occupied many 
, and Jesus with His followers may still have stood on 
i spot whence He bade the ten lepers go show themselves to 
its. He may have followed them with His eyes, as, but a 
s on their road of faith, health overtook them, and the grate- 
iritan, with voice of loud thanksgiving, hastened back to his 
r. No longer now did he remain afar off, but in humblest 
e fell on his face at the Feet of Him to Whom he gave 
This Samaritan ^ had received more than new bodily life 
th : he had found sj>iritual life and healing, 
why did the nine Jews not return ? Assuredly, they must 
I some faith when first seeking help from Christ, and still 
en setting out for the priests before they had experienced the 

ok III. chap. XV. St. Luke here, and in the Parable of the 

note, in St. Luke xvii. 14, the good Samaritan, a peculiarly Pauline 

to show themselves * to the trait. But we remember St. John's refer- 

i the plural), this forms another ence to the Samaritans (iv.)» *^^ such 

undesigned evidence of the sentiments in regard to the GentUes as 

y of the narrative. St. Matt. viii. 11, 12. 
have seen in the reference by 


BOOK healing. But perhaps, viewing it from our own standpoint, we may 
TV overestimate the fisdth of these men. Bearing in mind the views of 
the Jews at the time, and what constant succession of miraculous cores 
— without a single failm-e — ^had been witnessed these years, it cannot 
seem strange that lepers should apply to Jesus. Nor perhaps did 
it, in the circumstances, involve very much greater faith to go to the 
priests at His bidding — implying, of course, that they were or would 
be healed. But it was far different to turn back and to fiedl down at 
His Feet in lowly worship and thanksgiving. That made a man a 
disciple. Many questions here suggest themselves : Did these nine 
Jews separate from the one Samaritan when they felt healed, common 
misfortune having made them companions and brethren, while the 
bond was snapped so soon as they felt themselves free of their common 
sorrow? The History of the Church and of individual Christians 
furnishes, alas ! not a few analogous instances. Or did these nine 
Jews, in their legalism and obedience to the letter, go on to the 
priests, forgetful that, in obeying the letter, they violated the spirit 
of Christ's command ? Of this, alas ! there are also only too many 
parallel cases which will occur to the mind. Or was it Jewish pride, 
which felt it had a right to the blessings, and attributed them, not 
to the mercy of Christ, but to God ; or, rather, to their own relation 
as Israel to God ? Or, what seems to us the most probable, was it 
simply Jewish ingratitude and neglect of the blessed opportunity 
now within their reach — a state of mind too characteristic of those 
who know not * the time of their visitation ' — and which led up to 
the neglect, rejection, and final loss of the Christ ? Certain it is, that 
the Lord emphasised the terrible contrast in this between the chil- 
dren of the household and ' this stranger.' * And here another im- 
portant lesson is implied in regard to the miraculous in the Gospeb. 
This history shows how little spiritual value or eflScacy they attach 
to miracles, and how essentially different in this respect their ten- 
dency is from all legendary stories. The lesson conveyed in this 
case is, that we may expect, and even experience, miracles, without 
any real faith in the Christ ; with belief, indeed, in His Power, W^ 
without surrender to His Rule. According to the Gospels, a maa 
might either seek benefit from Christ, or else receive Christ throng^^ 

* The equivalent for this would be the same time it must be adniit^f||^ 
^"1?3 This, as may be shown from very that in Demai iii. 4, the Nockri u »*JJ 

numy passages, means not so mnch a ^i';lJS?'*^Bu*r"L'^t^e ^SZ>^^ 

stranger as a non- Jew. Thus, the expres- >^amantan. But see tne e^^^l^ 

sion Noekri and !?«•««/ are constontly ?»*? °^ Maxmmtd^ referred to by *^ 

contrasted as non-Jews and Jews. At ««««*. vol. i. p. 87. 


Eucb benefit. In the one case the benefit sought was the object, in chap. 
the other the means ; in the one, it was the goal, in the other, the xxii 
road to it ; in the one, it gave healing, in the other, brought ' 
salvation ; in the one, it ultimately led away from, in the other, 
to Christ and to discipleship. And so Christ now spake it to this 
Samaritan : * Arise, go thy way ; thy faith has made thee whole.' 
But to all time there are here to the Church lessons of most important 

2. The Discourse concerning the Coming of the Kingdom, which 
is reported by St. Luke immediately after the healing of the ten 
lepers,* will be more conveniently considered in connection with the •st.Lnbi 
fuller statement of the same truths at the close of our Lord's Minis- 
try.* It was probably delivered a day or so after the healiDg of the *si.ji«t(. 
lepers, and marks a farther stage in the Fertean journey towards 
Jerusalem. For, here we meet once more the Pharisees as ques- 
tioners." This circumstance, as will presently appear, is of great <6bLnke 
importance, as carrying us back to the last mention of an interpella- 
tion by the Pharisees,'* 'insuLnkB 

3. This brings us to what we regard as, in point of time, the next 
Disconise of Christ on this journey, recorded both by St. Matthew, 

and, in briefer form, by St. Mark.* These Evangelists place it im- If' -^fj^ 
nedi^^ly after their notice of the commencement of this journey.' stiurki. 
For reasons previously indicated, St. Luke inserts the healing of rgt.jfut. 
the lepers and the prophetic Discourse, while the other two Evan- s?ji!»rk*it.i 
geliBts omit them. On the other band, St. Luke omits the 
Discourse here reported by St. Matthew and St. Mark, because, as 
n can readily see, its subject-matter would, &om the standpoint of 
lis Gospel, not appear of snch supreme importance as to demand 
•Mertion in a narrative of selected events. 

The subject-matter of that Discourse, in answer to Pharisaic 
'tempting,' is an exposition of Christ's teaching in regard to the 
Jewish law and practice of divorce. The introduction of this subject 
m the narratives of St. Matthew and St. Mark seems, to say the 
**'ftj abrupt. But the difficulty is entirely removed, or, rather, 
'''■■iged into undesigned eridence, when we fit it into the general 
""toiy. Christ had advanced farther on His journey, and now once 
"We encountered the hostile Pharisees. It will be remembered 
'w He had met them before in the same part of the country,' ' and ^,^' 
^^ered their taunts and objections, among other things, by charg- 
•"8 them with breaking in spirit that Law of which they professed 
' S«e chap. xviiL of this Book. 


to be the exponents and representatives. And thie He had proi'rf 
by reference to their views and teaching on the subjert of divorcr.' 
This seems to have rankled in their minds. Probably they also 
imagined, it would be easy to show on this point a marked difterence 
between the teaching of Jesus and that of Moses and the Kabbis, and 
to enlist jMpular feeling against Him. Accordingly, when these 
Pharisees again met Jesus, now on His journey to Jadiea, they re- 
sumed the subject precisely where it hud been broken off when they 
had last met, only now with the object of ' tempting Him.' Perhaps 
it may also have been in the ho^ie that, by getting Christ to commit 
Himself against divorce in Peraia^the territory of Herod — ^they 
might enlist against Him, as formerly against the Baptist, the im- 
placable hatred of Herodias.' 

But their muin object evidently was to involve Christ in con- 
troversy with some of the Rabbinic Schools. This appears from the 
form in which they put the question, whether it was lawful to prt 
away a wife ' for every cause ' ? " St. Mark, who gives only a fBy 
condensed account, omits this clause; but in Jewish circles thewhol* 
controversy between different teachers turned upon this point. All 
held that divorce was lawful, the only question being as toitsgromnis. 
We will not here enter on the unsavoury question of ' !)!%■(»»' 
among the Jews,* to which the Talmud devotes a sjwcinl tractale.' 
There can, however, be no question that the practice was disuouia^ 
by many of the better Rabbis, alike in word' and by their example;' 
nor yet, that the Jewish I*aw took the most watchful care of the 
interests of the woman. In fact, if any doubt were raised as (o thi^ 
legal validity of a letter of divorce, the Law always pronouncwi 
againat the divorce. At the same time, in popular practice, divoW 
must have been veiy frequent ; while the principles underlying Jewish 
legislation on the subject are most objectionable.* These were in 
turn due to a comparatively lower estimate of woman, and to a" 
unspiritual view of the marriage-relation. Christianity has Sf** 
raised woman to her proper position, not by giving her a db* 
one, but by restoring and fully developing that assigned to hw 

' This, according to many commen- 
latora. See Meyer, ad loc. 

' On the general subject I woulrt refer 
to ' Sketches oi Jewish Social Life,' |ip. 
1*2, li57, 1B6. 

■ ThiiB, the Tulmadic tractate on ' Di- 
vorce,' while insisting on its duly in case 
of Mn, dosea with the words ; ■ He who 
divorem his first wife, the very sJtju- sheds 
■" .' (Oitt. SO *, last lines: 

comp. Mai. ii. 13-lfi}. 

' An instance of ref neing to be ffivol**** 
tvrii (torn e. very disagreeable and q"*'" 
rpJsoiDe wife, is that of R. Chijl. «"*" 
tioned in Teliain. B3 a, lotrsj^iti eni ^^ 

* Two disgusting instanoeB of Bii*^ 
making proolanuition of their wish t" 
nuuritid for a day (in a stiange pi 


and then divorced), are mcntioDe'' 
Youitt 18 b. 


in the Old Testament. Similarly, as regards marriage, the New chap. 
Testament — which would have ns to be, in one sense, ' ennuchs for xx.u 
the Kingdom of God,' has also full; restored and finally developed 
what the Old Testament had already implied. And this is part of 
the lesson taught in this Diacourse, both to the Pharisees and to the 

To begin with, divorce (in the true sense) was regarded as a 
privilege accorded only to Israel, not to the Gentiles." On the -Jn.KLiid. 
qnestionrwhat constituted lawful grounds of divorce, the Schools were la 
divided. Taking their departure from the Bole ground of divorce 
mentioned in Deut. zxiv. 1 : ' a matter of shame [literally, naked- 
ness^,' the School of Shammai applied the expression only to moral 
transgressioDB,'' and, indeed, eicluaively to unchastity," It was de- ■■ oiw. it lo 
ctared that, if a woman were as mischievous as the wife of Ahab, or JJ'^J^'* 
[^according to tradition] the wife of Korah, it were well that her hus- ^^^{"'i^ 
band should not divorce her, except it be on the ground of adultery.^ ""^'^ 
At the same time, this must not be regarded as a fixed legal principle, suh. n a ' 
bnt rather as an opinion and good counsel for conduct. The very 
ptssages, from which the above quotations are made, also afford only 
too painful evidence of the laxity of views and practices current. 
And the Jewish Law unquestionably allowed divorce on almost any 
gnaad ; the difierence being, not as to what was lawful, but on 
"'oat grounds a man should set the Law in motion, and make use of 
^^ absolute liberty which it accorded him. Hence, it is a serious 
"Ustake on the part of commentators to set the teaching of Christ 
*"■ this subject by the side of that of Shammai. 

But the School of Hillel proceeded on different principles. It 
"*k the words ' matter of shame ' in the widest possible sense, and 
™l*red it sufficient ground for divorce, if a woman had spoiled 
•"w husband's dinner." Rabbi Akiba thought, that the words,' Mf •<""-»«'' 
™* find no favour in his eyes,' implied that it was sufficient if a j "'■"'■""■ 
'"^tx had found another woman more attractive than his wife. All 
'8'^ed that moral blame made divorce a duty,* and that in such cases J?'^\J^^ 
* Woman should not be taken back." According to the Mishnah,' ■■•* 
•o»tten could not only be divorced, but with the loss of their dowry, , cj^ij^^rt. 
" they transgressed against the Law of Moses or of Israel. The * 
"^toer is explained as implying a breach of the laws of tithing, of 
^Uiug apart the first of the dough, and of purification. The latter 
** explained as referring to such offences as that of going in public 


BOOK with uncovered head, of spinning in the public streets, or entering 
IV into talk with men, to which others add, that of brawling, or of dis- 
respectfully speaking of her husband's parents in his presence. A 
« Erub. 41 b troublesome,' or quarrelsome wife might certainly be sent away;* and 
Yebam.6S6 jj| j-^pute^ or childlcssness (during ten years) were also regarded as 
« oitt iv. valid grounds of divorce.*^ 

Incomparably as these principles differ from the teaching of 
Christ, it must again be repeated, that no real comparison is possible 
between Christ and even the strictest of the Babbis, since none of 
them actually prohibited divorce, except on the ground of adulteij, 
nor yet laid down those high eternal principles which Jesus enun- 
ciated. But we can understand how, from the Jewish point of view, 

* tempting Him,' they would put the question, whether it was lawfdl 
to divorce a wife * for every cause.' ' Avoiding their cavils, the Loid 
appealed straight to the highest authority — God's institution of ma^ 

••uaedintiie riagc. He, Who at the beginning* [from the first, originally, cno]* 
forexmmpie, had made them male and female, had in the marriage-reUtioD 

* joined them together,* to the breaking of every other, even the 
nearest, relationship, to be *one flesh' — that is, to a union which 
was unity. Such was the fact of God's ordering. It followed, that 
they were one — and what God had willed to be one, man might not 
put asunder. Then followed the natural Kabbinic objection, why 
Moses had commanded a bill of divorcement. Our Lord replied hj 
pointing out that Moses had not commanded divorce, only tolerated 
it on account of their hardness of heart, and, in such case, com- 
manded to give a bill of divorce for the protection of the wife. And 
this argument would appeal the more forcibly to them, that the 
Kabbis themselves taught that a somewhat similar concession had 

• Dcut xxi been made ® by Moses in regard to female captives of war — as the 
f Kid(i.2i Talmud has it, * on account of the evil impulse.' ^ But such asepara^ 
tion, our Lord continued, had not been provided for in the original 
institution, which was a union to unity. Only one thing could put am 
end to that unity — its absolute breach. Hence, to divorce one's wife 
(or husband) while this unity lasted, and to marry another, va^ 
adultery, because, as the divorce was null before God, the original 
marriage still subsisted — and, in such case, the Rabbinic Law would 
also have forbidden it. The next part of the liord's inference, that 

» These words are omitted by St. Mark fully reproducing what had taken pl»»- 

in his condensed account. But 80 far « The clause, St. Matt. xix. 4, should. I 

from regarding, with Meyer ^ the briefer think, l)e thus pointed : ' He Who na^ 

account of St. Mark as the original one, them, at the beginning made them, J^c* 
we look on that of St. Matthew as more 


lanieth her which is put away doth commit adultery,' is more 
of interpretation. Generally, it is understood as implying 
'Oman divorced for adultery might not be married. But it 
argued,' that, as the literal rendering is, * whoso marrieth 
1 put away,' it applies to the woman whose divorce had just 
en prohibited, and not, as is sometimes thought, to ' a woman 
[under any eircumBtanees].' Be this as it may, the Jewish 
ich regarded marriage with a woman divorced under any cir- 
^s as unadvisable,* absolutely forbade that of the adulterer ■ 
adulteress." ' 

tever, therefore, may be pleaded, on account of 'the hard- 
,eart ' in modem society, in favour of the lawfulness of re- 
!hrist'H law of divorce, which confines disBolution of marriage 
■ne ground (of adultery), because then the nnity of God's 
has been broken by sin — such a retrocessiou was at least not 
und of Christ, nor can it be considered lawful, either by the 
or for individual disciples. But, that the Pharisees had 
udgedwhen ' tempting Him,' what the popular feehng would 
e subject, appears even from what * His disciples ' [not neces- 
i Apostles] afterwards said to Him. They waited to express 
sent till they were alone with Him * in the house,'* and then • 
at, if it were as Christ had taught, it would be better not to 
. all. To which the Lord rephed,* that ' this saying ' of the * 
: * ' it is not good to mjirry,' could not he received by all men, 
by those to whom it was ' given.' For, there were three cases 
I abstinence from marriage might lawfully be contemplated. 
f these it was, of course, natural j and, where it was not so, a 
;ht, ' for the Kingdom of Heaven's sake ' — that is, for the eer- 
od and of Christ — have all his thoughts, feelings, and impulses 
;ed that others were no longer existent. For, we must here 
if a twofold misunderstanding. It is not a bare abstinence 
irriage, together with, perhaps, what the German Reformers 
mmundn ccmtineiitia (unchaste continency), which is here 
ded, but such inward preoccupation with the Kingdom of God 
remove all other thoughts and desires.* It is this which 
' given ' of God ; and which ' he that is able to receive it ' — 
t got the moral capacity for it — is called upon to receive. 
t must not be imagined that this involves any command of 

I Owi atgaes this with great also applied to that of Christ. 

* For, it is not merely to practise out,- 
s the (reneral view. But 'the ward continence, but to become in mind 
Mj, without much difficulty, be and heart a eunuch. 


celibacy; it only speaks of such who in the active aerrice of Ute 
Kingdom feel, that their every thought ia so engrossed in the work, 
that wishes and impulses to marriage are no longer existent ia 

4. The next incident is recorded by the three Evangelists.^ It 
probably occurred in the same house where the disciples hid 
questioned Christ about His teacliing on the Divinely sa<a«d rdt- 
tioQship of marriage. And the blessing of ' infants ' and * little chil- 
dren ' by Him moat aptly follows on the former teaching. It ii i 
scene of unspeakable sweetness and tenderoesa, where all is in ehi- 
racter — alas ! even the conduct of the * disciples,' aa we remember 
their late inability to sympathise with the teaching of the Muter. 
And it ia all so utterly unlike what Jewish legend would hire 
invented for its Meaaiah. We can nnderstand how, when One Who 
so spake and wrought, rested in the house, Jewish mothers shoiU 
have brought their ' little children,' and some their ' infants,' to Him. 
that He might ' touch,' * put His Hands on them, and pniy.' Whit 
power and holiness must these mothers have believed to be in Hii 
touch and prayer ; what life to be in, and to come from Him; and 
what gentleness and tenderness must His have been, when ibev 
dared so to bring these little ones ! For, how utterly contraxT it- 
was to all Jewish notions, and how incompatible with the supposed 
dignity of a Rabbi, appears from the rebuke of the disciples. It«»s 
an occasion and an act when, as the fuller and more pictorial Hcconcf^ 
of St. Mark informs us, Jesus ' was much displeased ' — the only tin** 
this strong word is UKed of our Ixird '- — and said unto them : ' Sofi'^ ' 
the little children to come to Me,' hinder them not, for of snch "* 
the Kingdom of God.' Then He gently reminded His owndL^ 
ciples of their grave error, by repeating what they had apparent ^ 
forgotten,' that, in order to enter the Kingdom of God, it must *^ 
received as by a little child — that here there could be no questicm ^ 
intellectual qualification, nor of distinction due to a great Kabbiit"*- 
only of humility, receptiveness, meekness, and a simple applicati^^ 

' The mistaken literalism uf applica- Any practice of thiakiiKl wouldh*iBt»-=''' 

tion on the port of Origen is well known. quit* contrarj' to Jewish law (I'es. 11? 

Soch practice must have been not un- Shabh. 1 10 ft). 

freqnent among Jewish Christiana, for, ' The other places in which tb« "^^S 

curioDsIy enough, the Talmnd refers lo occurs are: S(. Matt. ■xx. 2-1; xii- ^^^^ 

it, reporting a conversation between a invi. 8 ; St. Mark x. 41 ; siv. 4 ; St. 1 ^— ^ 

Babbi and such a Jewish Cliriatian xiii. 14; the substantive in S Cor- ^ 

eunuch (KTKU 'PHX). Shabb. 152 a. 11. 

The same story is related, with slig-ht * The ' and ' before ' hinder ' sbookt- 

alterations, tn the Midrash on Eccles. x, omitted according to the best USS. 
7, ed. Waish. p. 102 a, last four lines. 


and trost in, the Christ. And bo He folded theee little ones in 
Arms, put His Hands upon them, and blessed them,' and thus 
ever consecrated that child-life, which a parent's love and faith 
light to Him ; blessed it also by the layiug-on of His Hands — as 
vete, ' ordained it,' as we fully believe to all time, ' strength 
iose of His enemies.' 

Aa Mr. Brtaen MoClellan notes, in ponnd form of blessing', especially of 
learned work on the New Testa- dearest friends and relations at meeting 
t, the wofd is an 'intentillve com> and parUng.' 








• St. Luke 

«> St. Mark 

• St, Matt. 

(St. Matt. zix. lG-22; St. Mark z. 17-22; St. Lnkc xyiii. 18-23; St. Mattziz. 
30 ; St. Mark z. 23-31 ; St. Luke xviii. 24-30; St. Matt. zz. 17-19; St link z* 
32-34 ; St. Luke xviu. 31-34 ; St. Matt. zx. 20-28 ; St. Mark z. 35-46.) 

As we near the goal, the wondrous story seems to grow in tenderness 
and pathos. It is as if into these days were to be crowded all (lie 
loving condescension of the Master ; all the pressing need, and th^ 
human weaknesses of His disciples. And with equal compessun. 
He beholds the difficulties of them who truly seek to oome to Him, 
and those which, springing from without, or even fit)m self ani 
sin, beset them who have already come. Let us try reverently to 
follow His steps, and learn of His words. 

As * He was going forth into the way ' * — we owe this trait, as on^ 
and another in the same narrative, to St. Mark — probably at early 
mom,- as He left the house where He had for ever folded into Hi>5 
Arms and blessed the children brought to Him by believing parents — 
His progress was arrested. It was 'a young man,' *a ruler,' ^ 
probably of the local Synagogue,* who came with all haste, *niii^ 
ning,' and with lowliest gesture [kneeling],*' to ask what to him, nay 
to us all, is the most important question. Kemembering that, whil^ 
we owe to St. Mark the most graphic touches,^ St. Matthew most folly 
reports the words that had been spoken, we might feel inclined to 
adopt that reading of them in St. Matthew ^ which is not only mo^ 
strongly supported, but at first sight seems to remove some of th* 
difficulties of exposition. This reading would omit in the address 
of the young ruler the word ' good ' before * Master, what good thin^ 
shall I do that I may inherit eternal life ? ' and would make Christ's 

* Tliis is the exact rendering. 

* Dean Plumptre needlessly supposes 
him to have been a member of the Great 
Sanhedrin, and by a series of conjectures 

even identifies him with Laianu of 

* This Ls well pointed out by CMfl* 
Cook on St. Mark z. 19. 


e]>ljr read : ' Why askest thou Me concerning the good [that which chap. 
5 g-ood] ? One there is WTio is good.' This would meet not only xxiii 
he objection, that in no recorded instance was a Jewish Rabbi ^ " 
ddressed as * Good Master,' but the obvious difficulties connected 
nthk the answer of Christ, according to the common reading : * Why 
all&st thou Me good? none is good, save only One: God.' But 
n fclne other side it must be urged, that the imdoubted reading 
ftti.^ question and answer in St. Mark's and St. Luke's Gospels 
ir^^m with that of our Authorised Version, and hence that any 
ffici^olty of exposition would not be removed, only shifted, while 
le xr^eply of Christ tallies far better with the words * Good Master,' 
le strangeness of such an address from Jewish lips giving only the 
101'^ reason for taking it up in the reply : * Why callest thou Me 
;oo(i 7 none is good save only One : God.' Lastly, the designation of 
}oi Ska the only One * good ' agrees with one of the titles given Him 
in X^iRrish writings : * The Good One of the world ' {ch)V ^^ UtD).* * Id^SSH^ 
The actual question of the young Ruler is one which repeatedly M*}*» * 
occurs in Jewish writings, as put to a Babbi by his disciples. Amidst 
ihc different answers given, we scarcely wonder that they also pointed 
to observance of the Law. And the saying of Christ seems the more 
adapted to the yoimg Buler when we recall this sentence from the 
Tdrnnd : * There is nothing else that is good but the Law.' ^ But >» Ber. s a, 
liere again the similarity is only of form, not of substance. For, it middle ; Ab. 
"Will be noticed, that, in the more full account by St. Matthew, Christ 
leads the young Buler upwards through the table of the prohibitions 
<f deeds to the first positive command of deed, and then, by a rapid 
, tiansition, to the substitution for the tenth commandment in its 
'^^[ative form of this wider positive and all-embracing command : ^ • i^^' ^^^ 
*Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.' Any Jewish 'Buler,' 
°^ especially one so earnest, would have at once answered a chal- 
'^e on the first four commandments by * Yes ' — and that not self- 
''jhteously, but sincerely, though of course in ignorance of their 
^ depth. And this was not the time for lengthened discussion 
*^ instruction : only for rapid awakening, to lead up, if possible, 
' "^ earnestness and a heart-drawing towards the Master to real 

I ^1*0 really remove exegetical difficul- gcnious, is not supported. And then, 

' ?^^ 'jading should be further altered what of the conversation in the other 

jl *J»<ffTl T^ itr^6y,Ba Wufuehe su^geata. Gospels, where we could scarcely expect 

' ^ iMidB our present reading cu io-rly a variation of the saying from the more 

: *^)«0£, as a mistake of the translator in easy to the more difficult? On the ap- 

'^(idering the neuter of the Aramaic plication of the term * the Otood One * to 

^*%iQal by the masculine. We need God, see an interesting notice in the Jiid. 

^QUcely ny, the suggestion, however in- Liter. Blatt, for Sept. 20, 1882, p. 152. 

s 2 



djsciplesbip. Beat here to start from what was admitted as binding^ 
— the ten command raents— and to lead from that in them which iras 
least likely to be broken, step by step, upwards to that which ins 
most likely to awaken consciousness of sin. 

And the young Euler did not, as that other Pharisee, reply by 
trying to raise a Rabbinic disputation over the* Who is neighboor 
to me ? ' but in the sincerity of an honest heart answered that he hwi 
kept — that is, so far as he knew them—' all these things fixim his 
youth.' ' On this St. Matthew puts into his mouth the question— 
' What lack I yet ? ' Even if, like the other two EvangeliBts, he had 
not reported it, we would have supplied this from what foUom. 
There is something intensely earnest, genuine, generous, even entbit- 
siastic, in the higher cravings of the soul in youth, when that youth 
has not been poisoned by the breath of the world, or stricken iriH 
the rottenness of vice. The soul longs for the true, the higher, the 
better, and, even if strength fails of attainment, we watch wilii 
keen sympathy the form of the climber upwards. Much more muti 
all this have been the case with a Jsivlsk youth, especially in tltose 
days ; one, besides, like this young Ruler, in whose case afflo^iee ct 
circumstances not only allowed free play, but tended to draw rat 
and to give full scope to the finer feelings, and where wealth «( 
joined with religiousness and the service of the Synagogue. There 
was not in him that pride of riches, nor the self-sufficiency wiwi 
they so often engender ; nor the pride of conscious moral piurity ami 
aim after righteousness before God and man ; nor yet the pride of 
the Pharisee or of the Synagogue-Ruler. What, he had seen and 
heard of the Christ had quickened to greatest intensity all in iiiw 
that longed after God and heaven, and in this supreme moral earaet- 
ness had brought him, lowly, reverently, to the P'eet of Him in Whcun, 
as he felt, all perfectness was, and from MTiom all perfectneas cwne. 
He had not been first drawn to Christ, and thence to the pure,*» 
were the publicans and sinners ; but, like so many — even as Prtafi 
when in that hour of soul-agony he said: 'To whom shall we go? 
Thou hast the words of eternal life,' — he had been drawn tfl 1>* 
jture and the higher, and therefore to Christ. To some the mjto 
Christ is up the Mount of Transfiguration, among the shining Being* 
of another world ; to some it is across dark Kedron, down the At^V 
Garden of Gethsemane with its agonies. What matters it, if t^ 
«]Ually lead to Him, and equally bring the sense of need 
I In St. Malt, ijz. SO, these words sboul'l ]>e struck 

natters it, it t^ j 
d and e]q)^^M^| 
isapuriooa- ^^^^H 


'. »f pardon to tlie seeker after the better, and the s<'nse oi' need and CHAP. 
txpt* rience of holiness to the seeker after pardon ? xxill 

And Jesus saw it all : down, through that intense upward look; 
inwards, through that question, 'What lack I yet?' far deeper down 
than that young man had ever seen into his own heart — even into 
depths of weakness and need which he had never sounded, and which 
must be filled, if he would enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Jesus 
saw what he ladced; and what He saw, He showed him. For, * look- 
ing at him ' in his sincerity and earnestness, * He loved him ' — as He 
loves those that are His Own. One thing was needful for this young 
man : that he should not only become His disciple, but that, in so 
doing, he should *come and follow' Christ. We can all perceive 
how, for one like this young man, such absolute and entire coming 
and following Christ was needful. And again, to do this, it was in 
the then circumstances both of this young man and of Christ neces- 
sary, that he should go and part with all that he had. And what was 
an auiwardy was also, as we perceive it, an inward necessity ; and 
M>,a8 ever. Providence and Grace would work together. For, indeed, 
to many of us some outward step is often not merely the means of, 
bat absolutely needful for, spiritual decision. To some it is the first 
open profession of Christ ; to others, the first act of self-denial, or the 
fint distinct * No '-saying ; to some, it may be, it is the first prayer, 
or else the first act of self-consecration. Yet it seems, as if it needed 
WJt only the word of Grod but a stroke of some Moses'-rod to make 
4e water gush forth from the rock. And thus would this young Ruler 
bave been * perfect ; ' and what he had given to the poor become, not 
*hiough merit nor by way of reward, but really, ' treasure in heaven.' * 
What he lacked — ^was earth's poverty and heaven's riches; a 
Wt fully set on following Christ ; and this could only come to 
bim through willing surrender of all. And so this was to him alike 
tie means, the test, and the need. To him it was this ; to us it may 
^ something quite other. Yet each of us has a lack — something 
^te deep down in our hearts, which we may never yet have known, 
«id which we must know and give up, if we would follow Christ. And 
^Wjout forsaking, there can be no following. This is the law of the 
Kiiigdom — and it is such, because we are sinners, because sin is not 
^y the loss of the good, but the possession of something else in its 

There is something deeply pathetic in the words with which St. 

11m words * take up the cross,' in the spurious — the glofe of a clumsy interpo- 
'^'^ fdeeftui of St. Mark x. 21, are later. 



BOOK Mark describes it : * he was sad ' — ^the word painting a dark gloom 
IV that overshadowed the face of the young man.' Did he then not 
lack it, this one thing ? We need scarcely here recall the almost 
extravagant language, in which Rabbinism describes the miseries of 
poverty ; ^ we can understand his feelings without that. Such a 
lK)S6ibility had never entered his mind : the thought of it was terribly 
startling. That he must come and follow Christ, then and there^ 
and, in order to do so, sell all that he had and give it away anumg 
the poor, and be poor himself, a beggar, that he might have treasnre 
in heaven ; and that this should come to him as the one tiling 
needful from that Master in "WTiom he believed, from Whose lips he 
would learn the one thing needful, and Who but a little before had 
been to him the All in All ! It was a terrible surprise, a sentence of 
death to his life, and of life to his death. And that it should cone 
from HU lips, at Whose Feet he had run to kneel, and Who held 
for him the keys of eternal life ! Babbinism had never asked this; 
if it demanded almsgiving, it was in odious boastfiilness ; • while 
•Arach.viii. {^ ^jjg declared even unlawful to give away all one's possessions*— 
at most, only a fifth of them might be dedicated.^ 

And so, with clouded face he gazed down into what he lacked— 
within; but also gazed up in Christ on what he needed. And, 
although we hear no more of him, who that day went back to his 
rich home very poor, because * very sorrowful,' we cannot but believe 
that he, whom Jesus loved, yet found in the poverty of earth the 
treasure of heaven. 

Nor was this all. The deep pity of Christ for him, who had 
gone that day, speaks also in His warning to His disciples. Bn.'^ 
surely those are not only riches in the literal sense which make i'^ 
so diflBcult for a man to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven — 9^^ 
difficult, as to amount almost to that impossibility which was e^^ 
pressed in the common Jewish proverb, that a man did not even if^ 
his dreams see an elephant pass through the eye of a needle.® Bi^"^ 
when in their peri)lexity the disciples put to each other the sad" 
dened question : * Who then can be saved ? He pointed the«n 
onward, then upward, as well as inward, teaching them that, wh^ 

*» Ohothub. 

« Ber. 55 6. 
last line; 
oomp. filso 
Baba Mcz. 

* The word is only used in St. Matt, 
xri. 3, of the lowering sky. 

* ^lany sayings might here Ikj quoted. 
It was worse than all the plagues of Egypt 
put together (Baba B. 116 a); than all 
other miseries ( Bezah 32 ft), the worst afflic- 
tion that could befall (Shom. R. 31). 

* See a story of boastfulness in that 

respect in WUfucke, ad loc. To make^ • 
merit of giving up riches for Chris* i* 
surely, the Satanic caricature of th« 
meaning of His teaching. 

* The words in St. Mark x. 34, * fi» 
them that tnist in riches,* are most liM 
a spurious gloas. 


was impoBsible of achievement by man in his own strength, God chap. 
would work by His Ahnighty Grace. xxiii 

It almost jars on our ears, and prepares us for still stranger and " 

sadder to come, when Peter, perhaps as spokesman of the rest, 
seema to remind the Lord that they had forsaken all to follow Him. 
St, Matthew records also the special question which Simon added 
tq it : ' What shall we have therefore ? ' and hence his Gospel alone 
makes mention of the Lord's reply, in bo far as it applied only 
to the Apostles. For, that reply really bore on two points : on the 
reward which all who left everything to follow Christ would obtain ;' • st. mbm. 
and on the special acknowledgment awaiting the Apostles of Christ.** ^ S?.4'* 
In regard to the former we mark, that it is twofold. They who i-ok^ i>iu. 
had forsaken all 'for His sake'" 'and the Gospel's,'* 'for the»tt. 
Kingdom of G^'s sake ' — and these three expressions explain and ^' '* 
supplement each other — would receive 'in this time' 'manifold ^'^^J""^ 
more' of new, and better, and closer relationships of a spiritual <igt.M*riE 
kind for those which they had surrendered, although, as St. Mark 
ngnificantly adds, to prevent all possible mistakes, ' with persecu- 
tioDS.' But by the side of this stands out unclouded and bright the 
promise for * the world to come ' of * everlasting life.' As regarded the 
Apostles personally, some mystery lies on the special promise to 
tliem.' We could quite understand, that the distinction of rule to 
be bestowed on them might have been worded in language taken 
from the expectancies of the time, so as to make the promise intelli- 
gible to them. But, unfortunately, we have here no explanatory 
Jnfonnfttion to offer. The Sabbis, indeed, speak of a renovation or 
'^generation of the world (loSij; TIN enno) which was to take place 
*fter the 7,000 or else 5,000 years of the Messianic reign." Such a 'Saah. w* 
■'Wewal of all things is not only foretold by the prophets,* and '*"'"[**- 
welt upon in later Jewish writings,* but frequently referred to in ""i^- * j "■ 
■ oabtiaiuc literature.''" But as regards the special rule or 'judgment' iBwkof 
L <* the Apostles, or ambassadors of the Messiah, we have not, and, of is."':" ' 
K ^'•rse, cannot expect any parallel in Jewish writings. That the pro- b T»fgiiin 
I" Oiiee of such rule and judgment to the Apostles is not peculiar to SSl",™i. 
b 'IW is called the Judaic Gospel of St. Matthew, appears from its JU^^' 
t Joieiral at a later period, as recorded by St. Luke.* Lastly, that it J^'^'*^ 
t n in accordance with Old Testament promise, will be seen by a ^?ii''iu 


'a ooono, the cxpreasioD 'twelve away, as if the 'regeneration' referred i»,ai. 

""•ta ' (St. Matt. lii. 1!8) must not bo only to the Christian dispenaation, and to JJ^Jj;^" 

{''■Hd to atmoat literality, or it might epiritual relations under it. end; Pirkd 

"^Medwhetber Bt. Paulor St. Matthian ' This subject will be fnrther treated do B. EUa. 

""^ ... .... 'n the sequel. *' 




^•^ r ^ 

91 ; Rom. 
vUL 19-21 ; 
S Vvt. iii. 
18; Bev. 
xxi. 1 

»» 1 Cor. vi. 
2, 3 ; Bev. 
xz. 4 ; xxi. 

* Comp. also 
Acte zxvL 7 

St. Matt. 
XX. 16 : Bt. 
!\[ark x. 31 

* St. Matt, 
xvi. 21 ; 
xvli. 22, 23 

reference to Dan. vii. 9, 10, 14, 27 ; and there are few references in 
the New Testament to the blessed consununation of all things in 
which such renewal of the world,* and even the rule and judgment 
of the representatives of the Church,^ are not referred to. 

However mysterious, therefore, in their details, these things seem 
clear, and may without undue curiosity or presumption be r^;arded 
as the teaching of our Lord : the renewal of earth ; the share in His 
rule and judgment which He will in the future give to His saints; 
the special distinction which He will bestow on His Apostles, ooire- 
sponding to the special gifts, privileges, and rule with which He